As the latest resurgence of COVID-19 infections threaten vaccination efforts in many countries, India on Thursday recorded the world’s largest daily figure with over 300,000 new cases under 24-hours.
India’s daily record of 314,835 cases on Thursday surpassed the previous highest daily record of 297,430 cases recorded by the United States in January.
India’s total cases are now at 16,232,548, according to worldometer.info, the world’s second-highest after the U.S.
Deaths rose by 2,104 to reach a total of 184,657, according to the Asian country’s health ministry.
India is the worst hit by the recent surge in infections attributed to mass gatherings and the fast spreading new variants of the virus.
With the successful rollout of vaccination campaigns in many countries, the guard on safety appeared to be let down as businesses reopen and large gatherings allowed.
But it is risky to let the guard down yet. Health experts said the recent infection surge in India is a reminder that the battle against the pandemic is far from over, urging countries to reinforce safety protocols.
Health experts say India let its guard down when the virus “seemed to be under control during the winter, allowing big gatherings such as weddings and festivals”, according to a report published by Aljazeera.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is facing criticism for addressing packed political rallies for local elections and allowing a Hindu festival to go ahead where millions gathered, according to the report.
Health experts reacting to the new grave milestone in India said the situation might get worse as the country’s underfunded healthcare system has been stretched to breaking point.
More than two-thirds of hospitals had no vacant beds, according to the Indian government’s online database.
India has so far administered nearly 130 million doses of the coronavirus vaccine in what is one of the world’s largest inoculation drive.
But with a population of over 1 billon, the world’s second largest country is a far cry away from reaching herd immunity.
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