At 51,667, India reports slight dip in new cases; 1,329 deaths in 24 hours

A slight decrease in new Covid-19 cases was seen in the country on Friday with 51,667 more people testing positive, said the Union Health Ministry. The cumulative caseload has now reached 3,01,34,445.
The number of fresh infections stood at 54,069 on Thursday.
Further, the fatalities saw a slight increase for the second day in a row with 1,329 more people succumbing to the disease. The death toll due to Covid-19 has climbed to 3,93,310.
On the other hand, the recoveries continue to surpass fresh infections as 64,527 more people were discharged between Thursday and Friday. This took the total number of discharges to 2,91,28,267.
As a result, there are 6,12,868 active cases left in the country currently. The active tally has dipped by 14189 in the last 24 hours.
Tests conducted so far
India has tested 39,95,68,448 samples for Covid-19 until now, according to the India Council of Medical Research (ICMR).
Out of these, 17,35,781 samples were tested on Thursday. As many as 18,59,469 tests were conducted during the previous 24-hour period.
Vaccination in India
The country has so far administered 30,79,48,744 anti-Covid shots, said the Health Ministry. As many as 60,73,912 from these were given in the last 24 hours.
Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Delhi, Gujarat, Haryana, Jharkhand,  Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Odisha, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal have administered at least one dose of the vaccine to more than 10 lakh beneficiaries of the 18-44 age group.
However, India has fully vaccinated only 4% of its population.
Third-wave scare
The ICMR has said that it is too early to predict whether Delta Plus, labelled as a "variant of concern", will be responsible for the third wave of coronavirus in the country.
"It's a normal tendency of every mRNA virus to mutate. These mutations are inevitable, we cannot control the mutation. So, as time progresses, we will proceed further. So there will be a variation. Initially, there was alpha, then delta and now delta plus," said Dr Sumit Aggarwal, scientist and Program Officer, Division of Epidemiology and Communicable Disease at ICMR.
He said that in future more mutations can be seen and this virus is a 'variant of concern'.
"There are three characters of the variant which we have recognised till now. High transmissibility, it shows high affinity towards the lung cells and less response to the monoclonal antibodies therapy," said Aggarwal.
Delta variant
The Delta variant, the significantly more transmissible strain of Covid-19, is expected to become a “dominant lineage" if current trends continue, the WHO has warned after it was reported in 85 countries.
The Covid-19 Weekly Epidemiological Update released on June 22 by the World Health Organisation (WHO) said that globally, the variant Alpha has been reported in 170 countries, territories or areas, Beta in 119 countries, Gamma in 71 countries and Delta in 85 countries.
“Delta, now reported in 85 countries globally, continues to be reported in new countries across all WHO Regions, 11 of which were newly reported in the past two weeks," the update said.
WHO said the four current 'Variants of Concern' being monitored closely – Alpha, Beta, Gamma and Delta - are widespread and have been detected in all WHO regions.