New Delhi: According to data released by the government on Saturday, more than 500,000 cases of coronavirus have been diagnosed in India, showing that 18,500 new infections are added daily.
Authorities say that after an increase of 385 deaths within 24 hours, a total of 15,685 people died.
The epidemic is not expected to peak again in India for several weeks and experts say the number of cases may reach more than a million by the end of July.
Some state governments are considering new blocking measures. Due to damage to the economy, the national hard blockade that started on March 25 is decreasing.
The virus specifically hit densely populated cities in India. Now New Delhi has received a lot of attention. New Delhi has more than 80,000 cases, surpassing Mumbai.
The city council predicts that there will be 500,000 infections by the end of July. It already uses railroad cars to house patients and has taken over hotels and banquet halls to relieve the pressure on the overwhelmed hospital.
The Indian government has been criticized for the lack of testing, experts say the lack of testing masks the real number of cases in India, which currently stands at 509,000.
The current number of infections in the country ranks fourth in the world, after the United States, Brazil and Russia, although the death toll is much lower.
To strengthen the investigation work, the Delhi authorities have called on 33,000 health workers to screen about 2 million people in the confined space of the city’s 20 million inhabitants.
But in the coming weeks, cities with a population of 1.3 billion will usher in many new cases.
“It is likely that we’re going into a state, unless we are able to reinforce a strict physical distancing mechanism or a hard lockdown, where the rate of infection will continue to increase,” said Anant Bhan, a leading public health expert.
“Unlike China, where the pandemic was relatively more concentrated around Wuhan and a few other cities, India has a more diffused spread that makes it a bit more challenging for the healthcare system,” he told AFP.
Bhan said India might see several peaks in coming months because the spread of the virus “is variable across the country”.