Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope on Tuesday said the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic has not receded yet in the state but at the same time conditions are not favourable to immediately trigger the third wave.
Speaking to reporters in the Nashik district, Tope also said the COVID Task Force has cautioned about a third wave of the pandemic post the Diwali season.
"The second wave of the pandemic is not over yet. But there is no favourable condition for a third wave as of now. The state task force has cautioned of a third wave post the Diwali season. We are assessing the situation," he said.
Tope said over nine crore people have been vaccinated against COVID-19 with at least one dose in Maharashtra and 35 per cent of them have taken both doses.
He also said that no new coronavirus variant has been found yet and added that a special drive to inoculate the people left out so far will continue till the Diwali festival, which will be celebrated in the first week of November.
Tope said the new challenge before the state administration is to get the college students vaccinated against COVID-19. He appealed to collegians to come forward for vaccination.
Colleges in Maharashtra are set to reopen from October 20. The government had said that it would be advisable if students are fully inoculated to attend the physical classes.
Referring to Mumbai not reporting any fresh death due to COVID-19 on Sunday for the first time nearly since the pandemic broke out in March last year, the minister said it was a big achievement for the city with a 1.5 crore population.
The recent trend indicates that the number of COVID-19 cases is on the decline in Maharashtra.
Maharashtra reported 1,485 COVID-19 cases on Monday, the lowest daily count in more than 17 months, and 27 deaths, taking the infection tally to 65,93,182 and the toll to 1,39,816, as per the state health department. As of Monday, Maharashtra had 28,008 active cases.
According to a study, India's R-value, which reflects how rapidly the coronavirus pandemic is spreading, has remained below 1 since September, suggesting that the infection rate is declining