New Delhi, Apr 16 (EFE).- India reported a record daily spike of more than 217,000 coronavirus infections on Friday, continuing with its rapidly increasing trend that has added nearly 1.5 million cases in the last 10 days.
It was the second consecutive day when the country reported more than 200,000 cases in 24 hours.
Federal health ministry data showed that India recorded 217,353 new infections in the last 24 hours while deaths from Covid-19 rose by 1,185, increasing the overall toll to 174,308.
Total coronavirus cases reached nearly 14.3 million in India, the second worst-hit nation after the United States, which has reported more than 32 million infections.
Several media reports said cremation and burial grounds were overwhelmed with increasing number of bodies arriving for the last rites.
The health ministry said 10 states, including those where multi-phase regional polls are underway, have shown a rise in the daily new cases.
It said nearly 80 percent of the new cases reported on Friday were from these states.
The western state of Maharashtra, home to India’s financial capital of Mumbai, reported the highest daily new cases of 61,695. The region is under a strict curfew until the end of April.
It is followed by Uttar Pradesh in the north with 22,339 cases, while the national capital of New Delhi reported nearly 17,000 new infections.
The government in the national capital territory has imposed a weekend curfew and ordered shopping malls, gyms, and spas to remain closed from Friday evening to Monday morning.
Federal Health Minister Harsh Vardhan tweeted a clip of his interaction at a premier hospital in New Delhi Friday morning, in which a doctor was seen urging the government to be proactive as the pandemic would not end with the current second wave.
“We will have to face the third wave or the fourth wave. After that it may die down and vaccinations, as the government of India is doing, have to spread as far as possible,” the doctor said.
He said he was more worried because younger ones were contracting the disease and spreading it fast.
The doctor indicated that hospitals were overwhelmed and stressed the need “to look at the manpower (shortage).”
Hospitals in some of the worst-hit states have also complained of a shortage of oxygen supply.
It has prompted the government to allot funds for 100 hospitals to develop their oxygen plants.
The government has said it will import another 50,000 metric tonnes of medical oxygen.
It added that it was speeding up its vaccination drive in the country of 1.35 billion people, with more than 117 million doses administered since its launch in January.
Of these, 2.7 million shots were administered Thursday.
Until now, India has manufactured and used only two vaccines.