The spike in the cases has left the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) officials worried ahead of the festive season beginning on September 10 with the 'Ganesh Chaturthi'.
In the first six days of September, Mumbai has recorded over 28 per cent of the total COVID-19 cases that it had reported during the entire last month, as per civic data. The spike in the cases has left the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) officials worried ahead of the festive season beginning on September 10 with the ‘Ganesh Chaturthi’.
Additional Municipal Commissioner Suresh Kakani on Monday said in view of the current situation, the BMC has decided to ramp up coronavirus testing, hire more clean-up marshals to impose fine on people spitting in public places, and keep jumbo COVID-19 centres ready.
The data shows that Mumbai reported 2,570 COVID-19 infections in the last six days of September, which comes to 28.9 per cent of the total 9,147 cases recorded in the entire month of August. Besides, the city reported 21 fatalities in the last six days, while it had recorded 157 deaths due to COVID-19 during the entire last month. With the surge in daily cases, the active COVID-19 cases, which had dipped to 2,700, jumped to 3,771 on Monday.
The number of buildings sealed due to the COVID-19 cases rose to 44 from 20 in August. In another worrying parameter, the average doubling rate of COVID-19 cases worsened to 1,290 days after improving to over 2,000 days. The average growth rate based on the past seven days increased to 0.06 per cent from 0.04 per cent, as per the data.
“One month is important for us. Currently, people are going out for the ten-day Ganpati festival (beginning September 10). They will return after the immersion (of idols on Anant Chaturdashi). Hence, this period and the next 15 days will be very crucial for us,” Kakani said. In normal times, pandals set up by various mandals in Mumbai and in other cities of Maharashtra used to attract thousands of devotees during the Ganesh festival.
On Monday, Mumbai reported 379 new coronavirus cases and five fatalities, taking the tally of infections to 7,46,725 and the death toll to 15,998. The city is now left with 3,771 active COVID-19 cases, a BMC official said. The daily COVID-19 cases in Mumbai were recorded over 400 since September 1, but after a gap of five days, the city logged less than 400 infections on Monday.
On Sunday, Mumbai had recorded 496 COVID-19 cases and two fatalities. Kakani said the civic body is increasing the number of COVID-19 tests as a precautionary measure and also speeding up the pace of vaccination. Apart from this, the BMC is also conducting meetings with general practitioners at ward levels and keeping jumbo COVID-19 facilities ready.
“We are also appealing people to follow COVID-appropriate behaviour,” the civic official said, adding that they have already directed the ward offices to increase the number of clean-up marshals. He said the jumbo COVID-19 centres at Dahisar, Mulund and Bandra-Kurla Complex (BKC) are already opened and a couple of more centres will be opened later this month. Amid the rising graph of COVID-19 cases, BMC Commissioner Iqbal Singh Chahal last week held a meeting with top officials of the civic body and Mumbai police.