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Defence Minister down with Covid as cases surge 20%

Defence minister Rajnath Singh

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh has tested positive for COVID-19 on account of which he had to skip the Indian Air Force Commanders’ Conference which he was scheduled to attend in New Delhi today, according to an official statement.

The Defence Minister is currently under home quarantine with mild symptoms. A team of doctors examined him and has advised him rest, the statement added.

Meanwhile, India recorded 12,591 news COVID-19 cases  in the last 24 hours, 20 per cent higher than yesterday, data compiled by the health ministry showed.

The total coronavirus caseload in the country has gone up to 65,286.

The daily positivity rate, which shows the number of confirmed Covid cases in every lot of 100 people who are tested,  has gone up to 5.46%. The weekly positivity rate is 5.32%.

Medical experts have said Omicron sub-variant XBB.1.16 is driving the current surge. This is a relatively milder variant and most cases can be treated at home. However, it is important to check the oxygen level of patients.

The health ministry has said that there is no need to panic but people should follow Covid-appropriate behaviour.