India witnessed its highest jump in deaths related to COVID-19 in a 24-hour period between Tuesday and Wednesday just as regional governments were preparing to ease lockdown restrictions.
A total of 73 people affected by the virus had died since Tuesday morning, taking the India-wide toll to 1,007, the federal Health Ministry said.
The number of positive cases crossed 30,000.
The highest number of Covid-19 cases has been reported from Maharashtra, largely in its two biggest cities Mumbai and Pune, and national capital Delhi.
These areas were among those where the lockdown, now in its fifth week, is set to continue.
It is expected to be eased gradually after May 3 in regions which have not been affected by the virus or have shown no increase in cases in recent weeks.
The federal government had identified 170 hotspots or red zones across the country where the virus is still spreading.
More could be added over the next few days, a Health Ministry spokesman said.