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KOLKATA: The city reported 4,759 fresh Covid-19 infections, the highest single-day spike since the start of the pandemic, even as 9,073 new cases were detected across Bengal, with experts saying the sharp surge was proof of the pandemic’s third wave.
Kolkata had registered 2,801 cases on Monday, 46% of Bengal’s fresh case-load of 6,078. By Tuesday, this shot up to 52.5%, which means the city has more than half of the state’s new infections. Kolkata, with a positivity of 38.4%, has the highest rate of positive patient testing in the country, according to ICMR data.
“We are definitely into the third wave,” he said Diptendra Sarkar, surgery professor at IPGMER. “Going by the trend, we would see a very steep surge, that is likely to peak by January 15 to 18. Thereafter, there will be a plateau period around end-January,” he added.
Even during the peak of the second wave, fresh daily cases in Kolkata had never breached the 4,000-mark. The highest single-day spike in the city in the second wave was 3,990, recorded on May 3, 2021.
Abhijit Chowdhury, the head of hepatology at IPGMER and public health activist, said a “clearer picture” would emerge in two weeks. “But this wave will be a huge one. Even though infection caused by Omicron is apparently mild, given the tidal wave of cases, the absolute number of people down with Covid will be staggering, ”he said. “There is no place for laxity. We urge everyone to be calm and not panic. ”

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