Covid-19 in India: The humanitarian disaster is imminent, the blockade is the last ‘weapon’

Covid-19 in India: The humanitarian disaster is imminent, the blockade is the last ‘weapon’

Speaking on the radio on April 25, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that the Covid-19 “storm” shook the country, at the same time urged people to be vaccinated and cautious.

India is grappling with a devastating second wave of Covid-19. Photo: AFP

India has in recent days set a world record for the number of daily Covid-19 infections. The US side said they are extremely concerned about the rising wave of Covid-19 infection in India and the US is racing to send aid to India.

India recorded an increase of 349,691 Covid-19 cases over the past 24 hours, marking the fourth consecutive day that the world record for the number of cases per day was set. Hospitals in Delhi as well as across India have refused to accept patients due to lack of oxygen and hospital beds.

“We are very confident and excited after successfully overcoming the first Covid-19 wave, but this storm rocked the country,” Prime Minister Modi said in a radio address.

The Indian government is facing criticism that it has let off guard, allowing massive religious and political gatherings to take place as the number of cases in the country plummets below 10,000 a day without There is no plan to strengthen the health system.

Indian hospitals and doctors repeatedly issued urgent messages saying they could not cope with patients rushing to hospital because of Covid-19.

As noted by the Reuters reporter, Indians are arranging stretchers and oxygen tanks outside the hospital in desperation. “Every day a similar situation happens, we only have the amount of oxygen used within 2 hours, we need to get a guarantee from the government,” an Indian doctor said on television.

Outside a Sikh temple in the city of Ghaziabad (a suburb of Delhi), the street suddenly becomes a hospital emergency area, filled with cars carrying Covid-19 patients who are gasping for breath. portable oxygen.

Delhi’s Premier, Arvind Kejriwal, has decided to extend an extra week to the capital blockade, scheduled to end on April 26, in an effort to stop the spread of the deadly virus. It is estimated that every 4 minutes Covid-19 takes a life in India.

“The blockade is the last weapon we use against Covid-19, but the number of infections is growing so fast we have to use this weapon,” said the Prime Minister of Delhi.

The total number of Covid-19 infections in India so far has reached 16.96 million and the number of deaths has risen to 192,311 after an additional 2,767 overnight deaths, according to data from the Ministry of Health. Degree.

In the past month alone, the number of daily Covid-19 cases in India increased 8 times and the number of deaths increased 10 times. Health experts say the death toll in India is probably much higher.

In an article published in the Washington Post on April 24, Mr. Ashish Jha, dean of Brown University’s School of Public Health, warned that this country of 1.3 billion people is on the brink of a human disaster. religion.

And US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said on twitter: “Our hearts are on the people of India in the midst of this terrible Covid-19 outbreak.” “We are working closely with our partners in the Indian government and we will rapidly roll out additional assistance to the people of India and India’s health heroes,” said US Secretary of State. added.

The US has previously faced criticism from India for tightening exports of raw materials used for the production of Covid-19 resistant vaccines under the Defense Manufacturing Act and a related export embargo in February. .

In April, the Indian Serum Institute (SII), the world’s largest vaccine maker, urged US President Joe Biden to lift the embargo on raw material exports because the ban affects to the Indian production of AstraZeneca vaccines.

US Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi also urged the Biden administration to open an inventory of unused vaccines for India. “When people in India and elsewhere are in desperate need of help, we cannot keep vaccines in stock, we need to move them to places where they will save lives,” said Raja Krishnamoorthi.

Covid-19 spread in India is expected to peak in mid-May with daily infections reaching half a million, the Indian Express quoted an internal government assessment. This assessment was made by VK Paul, leader of the anti-Covid-19 task force at a meeting with Prime Minister Modi and heads of states. VK Paul also said that the medical infrastructure in the populous states of India is not enough to deal with Covid-19.