India's daily new COVID-19 cases fell below 19,000 for the fifth time this month, taking the country's caseload to 1,04,13,417, while the recoveries have surged to 1,00,37,398, according to data updated by the Union health ministry on Friday.
A total of 18,139 new infections were reported in a day, while the death toll increased to 1,50,570 as 234 more people succumbed to the disease during the same period, the data updated at 8 am showed.
The number of people who have recuperated from the disease surged to 1,00,37,398, pushing the national recovery rate to 96.39 per cent, while the COVID-19 case fatality rate stood at 1.45 per cent.
The active COVID-19 caseload remained below three lakh for the 18th consecutive day.
There are 2,25,449 active coronavirus infections in the country, which account for 2.16 per cent of the total caseload, the data stated.
India's COVID-19 tally had crossed the 20-lakh mark on August 7, 30 lakh on August 23, 40 lakh on September 5 and 50 lakh on September 16.
It went past 60 lakh on September 28, 70 lakh on October 11, 80 lakh on October 29, 90 lakh on November 20 and the one-crore mark on December 19.
According to the Indian Council of Medical Research, 17,93,36,364 samples have been tested for COVID-19 till January 7, including 9,35,369 on Thursday.
The 234 new fatalities include 72 from Maharashtra, 25 from Kerala, 19 from Delhi and 18 from West Bengal.
Of the total 1,50,570 COVID-19 deaths reported in the country so far, Maharashtra accounted for 49,897, followed by Tamil Nadu (12,200), Karnataka (12,131), Delhi (10,644), West Bengal (9,881), Uttar Pradesh (8,452), Andhra Pradesh (7,126) and Punjab (5,422).
The health ministry stressed that more than 70 per cent of the deaths occurred due to co-morbidities.
"Our figures are being reconciled with the Indian Council of Medical Research," the ministry said on its website, adding that state-wise distribution of the figures is subject to further verification and reconciliation.