A grim milestone has been reached globally as the COVID-19 deaths breached the 2 million mark, while the number of positive cases near 94 million.

As of Saturday, 7.52 am IST, the COVID-19 Dashboard by the Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE) at Johns Hopkins University (JHU) reported that the global coronavirus caseload stands at 93,787,372 while the fatalities across the world stand at 2,006,987.

The United States continues to be the worst-affected country by the pandemic reporting over 23,520,563 cases and 391,922 deaths – the most anywhere in the world.

India and Brazil continue to be the second and third most affected country respectively reporting over 10.5 million cases and 8.393 million cases respectively. Brazil has the second-highest death toll in the world from COVID-19 reporting as many as 208,246.

Meanwhile, Russia may vaccinate 60 per cent of the population against the coronavirus in the first year. This is a very serious achievement, the head of Russian consumer rights watchdog Rospotrebnadzor said as reported by Sputnik.

US President-elect Joe Biden said that the coronavirus vaccine rollout in the US till now has been a “dismal failure”.

Sputnik further reported that UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said that current COVID-19 restrictions should be in force for some time more, as official figures showed that the UK has recorded 55,761 new coronavirus cases and 1,280 further deaths in the last 24 hours.

Japan’s Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare on Friday held a meeting to discuss introducing harsher punishments for violators of coronavirus rules as the country sees a surge in COVID-19 cases and deaths, media reported.

India today launched a nationwide vaccination drive against the novel coronavirus. Billed as the world’s largest vaccination program, covering the entire length and breadth of the country, the drive aims to first inoculate millions of its healthcare and frontline workers and reach an estimated 3 crore people by the end of its first phase.