In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, the Health Ministry has classified districts across all states and Union Territories as Red, Orange and Green zones with 130, 284 and 319 such zones respectively across the country, as on April 30.
All four major metropolitans - Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai and Mumbai - have been classified as red zones. The other major cities which are under the red zone are - Bengaluru Urban, Bengaluru Rural, Lucknow, Hyderabad, Indore, Bhopal, Patna, Ahmedabad, Surat, Pune and Nagpur among others.
Union Health Secretary Preeti Sudan has written to Chief Secretaries of all States and UTs delineating the above classification.
According to the data shared by the ministry, Uttar Pradesh has the maximum 19 red zones followed by Maharashtra which has 14 red zones. Tamil Nadu comes next with 12 red zones followed by Delhi which has 11 red zones. West Bengal is in fifth place with 10 red zones.
Uttar Pradesh also has the highest number of orange zones at 36. It is followed by Tamil Nadu with 24 orange zones. Bihar comes in third place with 20 orange zones.
The maximum green zones are in Assam at 30 followed by Arunachal Pradesh and Chhattisgarh with both states having 25 green zones. Madhya Pradesh comes next with 24 green zones.
"The districts were earlier designated as hotspots/red-zones, orange zones and green zones primarily based on the cumulative cases reported and the doubling rate. Since recovery rates have gone up, the districts are now being designated across various zones duly broad-basing the criteria," the Union Health Secretary wrote.
"This classification is multi-factorial and takes into consideration the incidence of cases, doubling rate, the extent of testing, and surveillance feedback to classify the districts. A district will be considered green zone if there are no confirmed cases so far or there is no reported case in the last 21 days in the district," she added.
Clarifying the classification of districts, the Health Secretary said: "For districts having 1 or more municipal corporations, corporations and other areas of districts may be treated as separate units. If 1 or more of these have reported no cases for the last 21 days, they can be considered 1 level lower in zonal classification, if the district is in Red/Orange zone."
"In buffer zones, extensive surveillance for cases through monitoring of ILI/SARI cases in health facilities has to be taken up. States are requested to delineate the containment zones and buffer zones in the identified red and orange zone districts and notify the same," she added.