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COVID-19

India sets global record with single-day rise of new COVID-19 infections

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(Last Updated On: August 30, 2020)

India’s single-day tally of 78,761 new COVID-19 cases on Sunday was the highest reported by any nation since the pandemic started. 

This surpassed the United States’ July 16 figure of 77,299 cases, a Reuters tally indicated. 

India, the world’s second-most populous nation is the third-worst affected country after the United States and Brazil. 

However, India’s daily tallies have surpassed those of both the US and Brazil for the past two weeks and continue to climb. 

On Saturday, India recorded a surge of 76,472 new cases over a 24 hour period but Sunday’s tally added over 2,000 more cases to that figure. 

India’s total now stands at 3,542,733.

COVID-19

‘Monumental tragedy of epic proportions unfolding across India’

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(Last Updated On: April 20, 2021)

India reported 1,761 deaths from COVID-19 overnight, its highest daily toll, with large parts of the country now under lockdown, Reuters reported.

This comes as the country battles a second wave that has left people fighting for hospital beds, oxygen and medicines.

The world’s second most populous country is grappling with its biggest public health emergency after it lowered its guard when coronavirus infections fell to a multi-month low in February, health experts and officials say.

On Tuesday, the health ministry reported 259,170 new infections, the world’s highest daily rate. It has reported daily infections above the 200,000 mark for six days.

Total coronavirus cases in India are now at 15.32 million, second only to the United States.

Reuters reported that Delhi, the capital city which has seen a surge in cases, began a six-day lockdown late on Monday that officials hope will slow the virus transmission and relieve the pressure on the health infrastructure.

People in Delhi and in towns of Uttar Pradesh, India’s most populous state, put out desperate calls for help on Twitter, asking for assistance getting their families into hospitals. Others reported dire shortage of oxygen and the anti-viral drug Remdesivir.

“(A) monumental tragedy of epic proportions is unfolding across India. No hospital beds, no oxygen, no vaccination,” said Manish Tewari, an opposition lawmaker, on Twitter.

India has lost 180,530 people to the disease, still quite a distance from the 567,538 deaths reported in the United States. But experts have warned that the official death toll does not reflect ground reality and that it could sharply rise as doctors struggle to cope with the pressure, Reuters reported.

“The huge pressure on hospitals and the health system right now will mean that a good number who would have recovered had they been able to access hospital services may die simply because of this,” said Gautam I. Menon, a professor at Ashoka University.

Several major cities are already reporting far larger numbers of cremations and burials under coronavirus protocols than official COVID-19 death tolls, according to crematorium and cemetery workers, the media and a review of government data. read more

Reuters Bhramar Mukherjee, a professor of biostatistics and epidemiology at the University of Michigan, said many parts of India were in “data denial”.

“Everything is so muddy,” she said. “It feels like nobody understands the situation very clearly, and that’s very irksome.”

Stung by criticism that the government had failed its people, Prime Minister Narendra Modi ordered vaccinations on Monday for anyone above the age of 18 to be given from May 1.

So far, 108.5 million people have received a first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, according to a government portal, a small portion of India’s 1.3 billion population.

Reuters also reported the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Protection has said all travel should be avoided to the country, while Britain said it will add India to its travel “red-list”.

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Delhi heads for strict lockdown as COVID cases spike

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(Last Updated On: April 19, 2021)

India’s daily COVID-19 cases jumped by a record 273,810 on Monday as the health system crumbled under the weight of patients, bringing total infections closer to that of the United States, the world’s worst hit country, Reuters reported.

India’s hospitals are struggling with a shortage of hospital beds and oxygen supplies as infections pass the 15 million mark, second only to the United States. The country’s deaths from COVID-19 rose by a record 1,619 to reach a total of 178,769.

Despite soaring infections, politicians continued to hold mass rallies across the country for state elections, Reuters reported.

Social media was flooded with people complaining about the lack of beds, oxygen cylinders and drugs, and citizen groups circulating helpline numbers and volunteering support.

According to Reuters, the Indian capital New Delhi will be under a strict lockdown for six days starting on Monday night, the city’s Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said, adding the healthcare system was at a breaking point because of the worsening COVID-19 outbreak.

The city was also facing acute shortages of hospital beds, medical oxygen supplies and key medicines such as the anti-viral Remdesivir, Kejriwal said.

Reuters also reported that criticism has mounted over how Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s administration has handled India’s second wave of the pandemic, with religious festivals and election rallies being attended by thousands.

Leaders including Home Minister Amit Shah are set to hold further road shows and public meetings on Monday.

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi – who has also addressed election rallies in recent weeks – said on Sunday he was suspending all his public rallies in West Bengal, which is in the middle of polls.

Hong Kong late on Sunday said the Asian financial hub will suspend flights from India, Pakistan and the Philippines from April 20 for two weeks due to imported infections.

As of Monday, India had administered nearly 123.9 million vaccine doses, which is the most in the world after the United States and China, though it ranks much lower in per capita vaccinations.

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India reports another record daily rise in COVID-19 infections

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(Last Updated On: April 17, 2021)

India reported a record daily increase of 234,692 COVID-19 infections over the last 24 hours, health ministry data showed on Saturday.

It was the eighth record daily increase in the last nine days.

Total cases reached nearly 14.5 million, second only to the United States which has reported more than 32 million infections, Reuters reported.

India’s deaths from COVID-19 rose by 1,341 to reach a total of 175,649, the data showed.

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