Mumbai: With Maharashtra witnessing a sudden spike in Coronavirus cases over the past few weeks, many political leaders in the state have tested positive for Coronavirus including health minister Rajesh Tope, Jayant Patil, Raksha Khadse, Eknath Khadse among others. “I have tested COVID positive. Whilst I am doing fine, I am taking appropriate medical advice and hope to recover soon. I shall be undertaking my duties via video-conference. I request those who have come in contact with me recently to be observant and self-isolate,” Jayant Patil tweeted yesterday.Also Read - Does Covid-19 Reduce Sperm Count And Fertility In Men? Know What Expert Has To Say

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Rajesh Tope had on Thursday that he has tested positive for coronavirus infection. In a social media message, the Minister of Public Health said, “I have tested positive for COVID-19. “My health condition is fine. I appeal to those who have come into contact with me recently to get tested at the earliest,” he said. “I will get better in coming days and will be ready to serve the people of this state again,” he added. Also Read - 52 Staff Of Gwalior’s Jai Vilas Palace, Scindia School Test COVID Positive, in Isolation Now

Raver MP Raksha Khadse tweeted, “The covid test would have been done as per the doctor’s advice due to sudden deterioration in health at night; Although my test report was positive, those who have come in contact with me in the last eight days should test their own covid. My health is stable and we should all take care of our own health.”

2 New Variants Detected in Maharashtra

Researchers have found two new mutations in coronavirus samples from Amravati and Yavatmal districts of eastern Maharashtra which can escape neutralizing antibodies, a senior official said on Thursday. However, in none of the samples for which genome sequencing was done, the UK, South African or Brazilian strains of the virus were found, he added. Yavatmal and Amravati are among districts which have shown considerable increase in new cases in the last week.

Cases in Maharashtra

After a gap of 75 days, Maharashtra on Thursday reported more than 5,000 new COVID-19 cases, a sizable number of them coming from Akola and Nagpur divisions, a health department official said. With 5,427 new cases, the caseload in the state rose to 20,81,520 while 38 fatalities took the death toll due to the pandemic to 51,669, he said. The state had reported 5,229 infections on December 4, which had been followed by a gradual drop in cases. The decline had prompted the state government to relax restrictions on movement and gatherings further, including the restrictions on travel by local trains in Mumbai.

What is the reason behind the rise in Coronavirus cases in Maharashtra?

The sudden spike in Coronavirus cases in the state could be due to the resumption of Mumbai local train services for the general public since February 1. This could have been one of the factors behind the increase in numbers, said a health department official. But this reason can’t be attributed to the spike in cases being witnessed in Vidarbha.

Another reason that may be contributing to the growing caseload is marriage functions and other family events that are taking place now. An official told The Indian Express that the recently-held gram panchayat elections could also have played a role.