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Covid-19: India hits new record with 3,689 deaths

International desk || shiningbd

Published: 14:23, 2 May 2021   Update: 14:24, 2 May 2021
Covid-19: India hits new record with 3,689 deaths

A worker carries wood for funeral pyres of COVID-19 victims at a crematorium on the outskirts of New Delhi on Saturday [Ishant Chauhan/AP]

India recorded its deadliest day of the pandemic yet with 3,689 deaths in the last 24 hours.

Sunday was the fourth straight day India has recorded more than 3,000 deaths as the second wave of the pandemic carries on unabated and keeps setting grim new records. Altogether 215,542 people have died from COVID-19.

The number of cases surged to 19.5 million with 392,488 new infections, government data showed. India became the first country to cross 400,000 daily cases on Saturday.

Healthcare systems are overwhelmed and a shortage of medical oxygen has emerged as the most serious challenge.

Thirty-four patients died because of oxygen shortages in hospitals in the national capital New Delhi and the states of Andhra Pradesh and Haryana on Saturday, the Times of India reported.

Thirty-one more with COVID-19-like symptoms and “breathing difficulties” died in a hospital Uttar Pradesh state, the report cited authorities as saying.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi held a meeting on Sunday to review the measures being taken to tackle the unprecedented surge.

India opened a new round of its vaccinations on Saturday, extending coverage for all those above 18 years, but only a handful of states were able to deliver the jabs because of a shortage of vaccines. Only 86,000 newly eligible people took the shot, the government said.

International aid is arriving from the United States, Germany, and other countries that have promised support to India as its healthcare system is pushed to the brink of collapse.