Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday said that India is in a better situation than other countries when it comes to coronavirus recovery and fatality rates but asserted that the positivity rate needs to be brought down to under five per cent and the number of RT-PCR tests should be increased.
"Today I spoke to chief ministers of states where the situation is deteriorating. Discussions over the status and distribution of vaccine took place and the picture is clearer now... As a result of joint efforts, today India is in a better situation than other countries when it comes to recovery and fatality rates," the Prime Minister said at a virtual meeting with chief ministers over the pandemic situation.
"The country has sufficient data and has wide experience in COVID-19 management. While making the strategy further... We have to bring down the positivity rate under 5 per cent and fatality rate under 1 per cent," he said.
He also said that the states must also start working to build cold storage facilities.
"Safety is as important as speed for us, whichever vaccine India will give to its citizens will be safe on all scientific standards. Vaccine distribution strategy will be chalked out in collective coordination with states. States must also start working cold storage facilities," he added.
The Prime Minister said that the ratio of RT-PCR tests and monitoring of patients in isolation should be increased.
He urged the chief ministers to share their feedback in writing on the COVID-19 strategy.
"Seeing good recovery rates, many think the virus is weak and they will recover soon, this has led to rampant carelessness... Those working on vaccine are doing it but we need to focus on ensuring that people are alert and transmission is curbed," he said.
Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee, Gujarat CM Vijay Rupani, Rajasthan CM Ashok Gehlot, Chhattisgarh CM Bhupesh Baghel, Haryana CM Manohar Lal Khattar, Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan, and Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal are among those were present at the meeting, held via video conferencing.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah, Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan, NITI Aayog's Dr VK Paul, Cabinet secretary, and Health Secretary also attended the meet.
The Prime Minister had earlier chaired several meetings with chief ministers in the past six months over the pandemic.
India reported 37,975 new COVID-19 infections in the last 24 hours and 480 deaths due to the disease, according to the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on Tuesday.
The total cases in the country now stands at 91,77,841 including 86,04,955 recoveries and 4,38,667 active cases. With 480 new deaths, the cumulative toll reached 1,34,218. The country is reporting around 30,000 to 47,000- daily new cases for the past few days.