India’s Covid-19 deaths cross 400,000-mark

New Delhi, July 2 (EFE).- India crossed a grim milestone of over 400,000 Covid-19 deaths after fewer than 900 new fatalities were reported from across the country on Friday.

It is the lowest number of daily deaths in recent weeks in the country suffered a devastating health crisis due to the second wave of the coronavirus amid deadly shortages of medicines, hospital beds, and life-saving medical oxygen.

The federal health ministry data showed that the virus claimed 400,312 lives since the outbreak in the country last year.

India has become the third country with more than 400,000 Covid-19 fatalities after the United States (605,013) and Brazil (520,095).

The South Asian nation also logged 46,617 Covid-19 infections in the last 24 hours from Thursday morning, raising the total number of coronavirus cases to 30.4 million.

Experts doubt the official data, stating that the actual figures could be significantly higher than the government is reporting.

Infections and deaths due to the disease in India have declined rapidly in the past few weeks after peaking in May when around 400,000 people would test positive, and more than 4,000 would die due to the virus daily.

The health system collapsed nearly with people waiting in long queues outside hospitals to get their patients admitted.

Crematoria were also overwhelmed as people lined up for the last rites of their loved ones killed by the disease.

Experts blamed massive religious events, political rallies in poll-bound states, and crowded public places for the new deadly outbreak.

The virus mutated itself into a new variant called “Delta,” first detected in India that contributed to the dramatic increase in cases in India because of its high transmissibility.

The World Health Organization (WHO) says the variant has already reached 100 countries.

With the deadly second wave of the virus showing clear signs of ebbing, the Indian government bets on its vaccination drive amid a push for herd immunity against Covid-19.

However, the shortage of doses has slowed down the government plans.

Less than 5 percent of the 1.35 billion people in India are fully vaccinated since the drive began in January.

India this week authorized the emergency use of the Moderna vaccine.

The health authorities have allowed the use of Covishield developed by AstraZeneca and produced in agreement with the Serum Institute of India (SII).

Health workers also administer the indigenously developed Covaxin of the Indian laboratory Bharat Biotech and the Russian formula V. Sputnik. EFE


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