NEW DELHI, July 20 (Xinhua) -- India's federal health ministry Monday morning said 681 new deaths due to COVID-19, besides fresh 40,425 positive cases, were reported during the past 24 hours across the country, taking the number of deaths to 27,497 and total cases to 1,118,043.

This is the highest single day spike in terms of new COVID-19 cases in the country so far.

"As on 8:00 a.m. (local time) Monday, 27,497 deaths related to novel coronavirus have been recorded in the country," reads information released by the ministry.

"The number of active cases in the country right now is 390,459," reads the information.

Presently the country has entered Unlock 2.0 phase, though restrictions remain in full force inside the COVID-19 Containment Zones.

As the COVID-19 cases continue to rise, human trials of a vaccine - COVAXIN, developed by "Bharat Biotech", started at a government-run hospital -- PGI Rohtak in northern state of Haryana on Friday.

"Three subjects were enrolled today. All have tolerated the vaccine very well. There were no adverse effects," tweeted the state's health minister Anil Vij.