Chennai: South Indian states - Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Kerala - achieved an unenviable record on Wednesday when all of them reported the biggest single day spike in Coronavirus caseloads, with the highest exceeding the 6,000 mark in AP.
Collectively, the fresh infections from the four states totalled 17,696, as the Union Territory of Puducherry reported another 124 new cases on Wednesday.
Andhra Pradesh topped the chart with 6,045 cases while Tamil Nadu came second at 5,849.
Karnataka reported 4,764 cases, with 2,050 of them coming from the capital city Bengaluru, where a week-long lockdown clamped to prevent the spread of the virus ended this morning, even as the government had ruled out its extension.
Kerala, witnessing a spurt in cases after managing to keep the numbers down earlier, saw 1,038 persons getting infected with the virus on Wednesday.
Andhra Pradesh also registered 6,494 discharges and 65 deaths, all new single day high, taking the aggregate number of cases to 64,713 and the toll to 823 on Wednesday.
The state now has 31,763 active cases after a total of 32,127 recoveries.
The infection positivity rate shot up to 4.51 per cent while the recovery rate was 49.65 per cent. The mortality rate stood at 1.27 per cent.
An MLA of the ruling YSR Congress tested positive for coronavirus in Guntur district, the seventh legislator to have contracted the disease.
Tamil Nadu, whose numbers were hovering in excess of 4,000 cases a day for the past few days, saw the cases race past the 5,000 mark on Wednesday, taking the count to 1,86,492.
Recoveries stood at 1,31,583, leaving 51,765 active cases. The toll from the virus was 3,144.
In Karnataka, the day also saw a record 1,780 patients getting discharged after recovery.
Out of the 4,764 fresh cases today, a whopping 2,050 were reported from Bengaluru urban alone.
As of July 22, cumulatively 75,833 COVID-19 positive cases have been confirmed in the state, which includes 1,519 deaths and 27,239 discharges.
Kerala, which reported the country's first COVID-19 case on January 30, a student who had returned from the virus epicentre city of Wuhan in China, saw for the first time, the single day fresh positive cases breach the 1,000 mark.
While 785 people contracted the virus through contact, the source of infection of 57 people is not known, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said in Thiruvananthapuram.
Of the infected, 87 had come from abroad and 109 from other states. The death toll has climbed to 45.
The cumulative tally of the infection was 15,032 in the state, while 1.59 lakh people are under observation.