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Politics India becomes second country to report 20M COVID-19 cases

19:55  04 may  2021
19:55  04 may  2021 Source:   thehill.com

SOS messages, panic as virus breaks India's health system

  SOS messages, panic as virus breaks India's health system NEW DELHI (AP) — Dr. Gautam Singh dreads the daily advent of the ventilator beeps, signaling that oxygen levels are critically low, and hearing his critically ill patients start gasping for air in the New Delhi emergency ward where he works. Like other doctors across the country, which on Monday set another record for new coronavirus infections for a fifth day in a row at more than 350,000, the cardiologist has taken to begging and borrowing cylinders of oxygen just to keep his most critical patients alive for one more day.

India has become the second country to report 20 million COVID-19 cases after days of record-breaking numbers.

a person standing next to a fence: Municipal workers barricade a a contaminated zone as a preventive measure against the spread of Covid-19 © Getty Images Municipal workers barricade a a contaminated zone as a preventive measure against the spread of Covid-19

But as the country faces a surge of cases that has overtaken the medical system, the true number of cases is likely much higher, The New York Times reported. Only the U.S. has seen more cases, according to numbers from Johns Hopkins University.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the government have been criticized for the outbreak and lack of needed medical supplies at hospitals.

India's COVID-19 Crisis Is Spiraling Out of Control. It Didn't Have to Be This Way

  India's COVID-19 Crisis Is Spiraling Out of Control. It Didn't Have to Be This Way The country is now facing the world’s worst COVID-19 outbreak, and a devastating humanitarian crisisScenes of mass death are now unavoidable in what’s often called the world’s largest democracy. Social media is filled with images of body bags and urgent requests for medical aid. Indians gasping for breath are being turned away from overwhelmed hospitals, sometimes simply because they don’t have lab reports confirming COVID-19 infection. Health workers plead for basic supplies. “We feel so angry,” says Kanchan Pandey, a community health worker in Azamgarh, Uttar Pradesh. “At least give us some masks and gloves.

Opposition leader Rahul Gandhi called for a national lockdown of the country in order to curb the spread.

"I just want to make it clear that a lockdown is now the only option because of a complete lack of strategy by GOI," Gandhi said.

Experts have pointed to the lack of COVID-19 restrictions and large, mask-less gatherings, as well as a more contagious variant, as some of the reasons the virus has erupted in India.

The Indian Premier League has announced that the rest of the season will be canceled due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Opinion: India's Covid crisis has revealed the real Narendra Modi

  Opinion: India's Covid crisis has revealed the real Narendra Modi Meenakshi Narula Ahamed writes that India's prime minister Narendra Modi's handling of the pandemic is endangering the country's public health but also its public institutions and democracy.By 2014, when Narendra Modi became prime minister of the world's largest democracy, India had long shed her image being one of the poorest nations teeming with starving and sick people in constant need of foreign aid. Under a team of pro-western reformers, India underwent an economic transformation in the 90's and by the early 2000's was being hailed as an economic powerhouse and an attractive partner for the western alliance.

Other countries have begun to send supplies to India amid the outbreak with the Pentagon sending four cargo planes of "critical supplies" to the country.

India has opened COVID-19 vaccinations up to all adults amid the surge but faces the challenge of having to vaccinate over one billion people.

There were over 368,000 reported cases of the coronavirus and over 3,000 deaths on Monday alone, according to the Times.

New daily cases topped 400,000 on Saturday.

India’s worsening Covid crisis could spiral into a problem for the world .
The South Asian country accounted for 46% of new coronavirus cases globally and one in every four deaths in the past week, said the World Health Organization.The South Asian country — home to around 1.4 billion people or 18% of the world's population — accounted for 46% of new Covid cases globally in the past week, the World Health Organization said Wednesday. One in every four deaths in the past week came from India, the UN health agency said.

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