"Our healthcare workers are going door-to-door to ensure that the vulnerable population is administered the precaution dose," he said, urging the states to also review administration of the precaution dose to 18-59 years age group with the private hospitals on a regular basis.
With 414 patients recovering in the last 24 hours, the total number of recoveries has gone up to 18,41,576 so far.
With the changing epidemiology of the pandemic globally and in India, existing guidelines aimed at minimising the transmission and circulation of the virus have been reviewed and updated. The Union Ministry of Health accordingly revised its guidelines for international arrivals on February 10, he stated.
The government said that the population with average age of 44 years were infected more in this Covid wave as compared to previous waves, and last time, the average was 55 years.
Asked if the pandemic is entering in endemic stages, Singh said, currently "we are still in the midst of the pandemic and the focus should be to curtail the virus spread and save lives".
About the prevalence of the Omicron variant of coronavirus in India, he said, 1,292 cases of the latest variant of concern were found on genome sequencing in December which rose to 9,672 in January.
The home secretary emphasised that there should be continued focus on the five-fold strategy of test, track, treat and vaccination, and adherence to Covid- appropriate behaviour.
Pandemic Records Are Tumbling! Top COVID & OMICRON Headlines
Given the situation, it surely can be said that Covid is endemic in India, but it is not about the "end" of Covid, rather it means there may be sporadic rise just like H1N1, which still exists but is manageable, Dr Animesh Arya, Sr. consultant in Respiratory Medicine said.
Cumulatively, 19,45,18,646 people in the 18-44 age group across all states and union territories have received their first dose and 1,51,14,678 have received their second dose since the start of phase-3 of the vaccination drive, it said.
The ministry said 22,93,781 beneficiaries in the age group of 18-44 years were administered the first dose, while 4,32,281 received the second dose of the vaccine on Friday.
India's Covid-19 vaccination coverage crossed the landmark of 46 crore on July 30. Cumulatively, 46,15,18,479 vaccine doses have been administered through 54,94,423 sessions, as per the data of the Health Ministry.
Cumulatively, 14,66,22,393 people in the age group of 18-44 years across all states and Union Territories have received their first dose and 76,51,261 their second jab since the start of phase three of the vaccination drive.
Two-thirds or 67.6 per cent of India's population aged above 6 years were found to have SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in the latest national sero survey. A third of the population did not have SARS-CoV-2 antibodies, which means about 40 crore people are still vulnerable to COVID-19 infection, the official said.
10,98,62,585 persons in the age group of 18-44 years across 37 states/UTs have received their first dose, while 35,08,932 persons have received their second dose since the start of the Phase-3 of the vaccination drive.