For the fourth day running, Maharashtras Covid-19 tally jumped sharply by 5,257 new cases on Monday, while the state's fatalities surpassed the 7,500-mark, health officials said.
The state's death toll shot up to 181 on Monday, down from the previous single-day high of 248 recorded on June 23.
Earlier on June 16, the state had reported the highest 1,409 fatalities after taking into account reconciliation of earlier deaths, which drastically escalated the toll.
With Monday's 181 fatalities, the state's death toll climbed from Sunday's 7,429 to 7,610, while the total number of cases zoomed to 169,883, both being the highest in the country.
This comes to roughly one death recorded every 8 minutes and a staggering 219 new cases notched every hour in the state on Monday.
The recovery rate marginally fell from 52.59 per cent to 52.37 per cent, while the mortality rate stood at 4.48 per cent.
For most days in June, the state has been recording three-digit highs of deaths and since the past four days, 5K plus new patients, causing big worries to the health officials.
The health department said that of the total number of cases declared till date, 73,298 were active cases as on Monday, lower (favourable) vis-a-vis the number of patients cured, indicating a positive sign.
Of the total 181 fatalities declared on Monday, Mumbai alone notched 92 deaths -- taking the city's death toll to 4,463, while the number of positive patients shot up by 1,226 to touch 76,765.
Besides Mumbai's 92 deaths, there were 26 deaths each in Thane and Pune, 12 in Aurangabad, 11 in Solapur, 8 in Jalgaon, 3 in Amravati, and 1 each in Nagpur, Osmanabad and Nashik.
On the positive side, a total of 2,385 fully cured patients returned home on Monday, taking the number of those discharged to 88,960 -- relatively higher than the 73,298 active cases at present.
Meanwhile, in a significant move to combat the pandemic, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Monday inaugurated the world's largest and India's first Project PLATINA -- a Plasma Therapy Trial Centre. It will provide free treatment to all critical patients at the 17 government hospitals and 4 BMC hospitals.
As many as 1.42 lakh patients received free treatment under the Mahatma Jyotiba Janarogya Yojana, including 1.22 lakhs for Covid-19 and the rest for serious ailments of heart, kidney etc., said Health Minister Rajesh Tope.
As hinted by Thackeray on Sunday, the state government on Monday extended the lockdown till July 31 and started its stringent implementation across the state, but also promised that there would be gradual easing of restrictions.
The MMR (Thane Division) remains a tricky issue as deaths and cases shoot up, with a whopping 3,593 new patients pushing up the number of positive cases to 122,325 on Monday. It has reported 5,530 Covid-19 fatalities so far.
Thane, with 36,002 cases and 871 fatalities, has emerged as the second worst-hit district in the state after Mumbai.
Pune district comes third with 21,303 patients and 740 deaths till now. But the Pune Division ranks second (after MMR) with 24,980 patients and fatalities reaching 1,040 on Monday.
The next major region of concern is Nashik Division with 521 fatalities and 9,040 positive cases, followed by Aurangabad Division with 258 deaths and 6,004 cases, and Akola Division with 126 fatalities and 2,654 cases.
Kolhapur Division has notched 51 deaths and 1,997 patients, Latur Division has 43 fatalities and 981 cases, while the Nagpur Division has recorded 18 deaths and 1,817 cases.
Only Kolhapur Division recorded zero fatalities on Monday, though there were new Covid-19 cases.
The number of people sent to home quarantine increased from Sunday's 570,475 to 574,093 on Monday, while those under institutional quarantine increased from 37,350 to 37,758 on Monday.