New Delhi: India recorded more than 4,000 coronavirus deaths a day for the first time, and more countries imposed lockdowns on Saturday to stop this devastating trend.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, 4,187 people have died in India, bringing India’s total casualties to 238,270. It added 401,078 new cases within 24 hours, bringing the case handling volume to close to 21.9 million, second only to the United States.
Experts, who have expressed doubts about the official death toll, say the new wave may not hit a peak until the end of May and there have been mounting calls for tough nationwide measures.
Rahul Gandhi, leader of the opposition Congress party, called on Prime Minister Narendra Modi to order a national lockdown or the spread could be “devastating” for India and other countries.
Britain has already declared a new variant found in India to be of “concern”.
The government, stung by criticism of its handling of the new crisis, has largely left individual state administrations to handle pandemic clampdowns.
While major cities such as New Delhi and Mumbai have been boosted by extra supplies of oxygen — much of it from abroad — and new hospital beds opened up, the southern states of Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Kerala have all ordered lockdowns to counter an explosion in cases.
Karnataka, including the major IT hubs in Bangalore, has ordered a two-week lockdown across the state starting Monday to stop the spread of the virus.
The state bears the brunt of Bangalore, home to many information technology giants in India and around the world, which added more than 48,000 cases in one day.
In the first 7 days of May alone, the city of 9 million people saw 1,907 deaths from the coronavirus in April.
The sharp increase in mortality was blamed on insufficient oxygen and intensive care beds.
Neighboring Kerala is seeing an increase of about 40,000 cases every day and a 9-day blockade starting on Saturday. Tamil Nadu, including major cities such as Chennai, will be locked for a period of 10 days starting from Monday.
Coronavirus cases and deaths were also held in West Bengal after West Bengal. Since the election, this is a huge rally organized by Modi and his arch unified, the country’s Chief Minister Mother Bande Banji State.
There is also a severe shortage of oxygen and beds in the main city of Kolkata.
The Indian nationalist government imposed a three-month blockade on the country last year, which not only prevented the spread of the first wave, but also caused huge economic losses.
People worry that new growth will undermine the recovery of Asia’s third-largest economy.
However, the ever-increasing death toll has increased the pressure on the government to take action.
Gandhi said in his letter to the prime minister that “your government’s lack of a clear and coherent Covid and vaccination strategy … has placed India in a highly dangerous position.”
Modi had “to understand India’s responsibility in a globalised and interconnected world” as “home to one out of every six human beings on the planet.”
“Allowing the uncontrollable spread of this virus in our country will be devastating, not only for our people, but for the rest of the world.”
The government did not immediately respond.