Kumbh Mela sparks concern about Covid-19 spread in India, Tibetan cases total 1,479

Kumbh Mela, the "world's largest congregation of religious pilgrims". (Photo courtesy: PTI)

(TibetanReview.net, Jan15’21) – As India continued to report falling Covid-19 cases, one of the world’s largest gathering of devotees is taking place on the banks of river Ganges in the holy town of Haridwar in Uttarakhand state, sparking fears of the spread of the virus. Officials say they are following pandemic guidelines, but most bathers at the Kumbh Mela are not wearing masks, noted the bbc.com Jan 15.

At a recent court hearing, petitioners raised concerns that unless the numbers were strictly controlled, the event could become a breeding ground for Covid-19, and that enforcing such measures would be difficult at a gathering of such a scale, the report noted.

Officials were reported to have said last month that the event will be held for 48 days instead of the usual three-and-a-half months due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Meanwhile the number of people in India found infected with the mutant UK strain of Covid, which is highly contagious, had risen to 109, reported the ANI news agency cited India’s ministry of health as saying Jan 14.


The latest data from India’s Ministry of Health and Family Welfare show that there were 15,590 new cases and 191 new Covid-19 deaths in the country in the past 24 hours as of Jan 15 at 8AM, taking their cumulative totals to 10,527,683 cases and 151,918 deaths. The number of fresh cases was lower than yesterday.

A total of 10,162,738, or 96.53%, had recovered while the number of active cases was 213,027, or 2.02% of the total. The case fatality rate remained at 1.44%. The percentage figures were mostly improvement over the previous day’s percentage figures.

The latest daily number of new cases, at 16,946, was less than the daily number of those who had recovered, at 15,975, leading to a decrease in the number of active cases by 576.

The country’s fifth-worst hit Kerala continued to report the highest daily new infections at 5,490, followed successively by the country’s worst-hit state of Maharashtra (3,579), eighth-worst hit West Bengal (680), fourth worst-hit Tamil Nadu (665), Chattisgarh (607), Gujarat (570), seventh-worst hit Uttar Pradesh (501), Madhya Pradesh (420), second-worst hit Karnataka (408), … Himachal Pradesh (62), and so on.

The 191 daily new deaths included 70 from Maharashtra; 19 from Kerala; 17 from West Bengal; 14 from Uttar Pradesh; 10 each from Chattisgarh and Punjab; 8 from Madhya Pradesh; 6 from Haryana; 4 each from Delhi and Tamil Nadu; 3 each from Uttarakhand, Gujarat, and Karnataka; 2 each from Rajasthan and Bihar; and so on.

India is currently the country with the world’s second highest number of Covid-19 cases and the third highest number of deaths in cumulative numbers.


After remaining unchanged for seven days, the cumulative total of Covid-19 cases among Tibetans in India, Nepal and Bhutan has risen by 6 to 1,479. Of them 1,411 had recovered, 31 were active and 37 had died, according to the tally of the Central Tibetan Administration Jan 15.

At its 42nd briefing this morning, the CTA’s Response Committee on Covid-19 has said 7 new cases had been reported among Tibetans in India during the post one week: 3 from Ladakh, 1 each from Dharamshala, Delhi, Kollegal, and Mundgod. Five of them were stated to be symptomatic.


Across the world the number of Covid-19 cases totaled 93,184,251 and the deaths 1,995,806, according to the tally of Johns Hopkins University as of 2:52 PM on Jan 15, 2021.


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