India reports new record number of coronavirus cases and deaths

21 April 2021, 13:54

People wait to receive a vaccine in Mumbai, India
Virus Outbreak India. Picture: PA

The surge in India has exacerbated the slowdown in global vaccination campaigns.

India has reported a record 295,041 coronavirus cases, as the death toll crossed 2,000 in a day for the first time.

Even with hospitals struggling, Prime Minister Narendra Modi advised state governments against imposing a harsh lockdown in favour of micro-containment zones as he sought to avoid another economic slump.

The surge in India has exacerbated the slowdown in global vaccination campaigns.

India is a major vaccine producer but was forced to delay deliveries of shots to focus on its domestic demand.

Global Covid-19 cases and deaths
(PA Graphics)

So far, India has administered more than 130 million doses of vaccines in a nation of nearly 1.4 billion since mid-January.

Overall, India has reported more than 15.6 million confirmed cases, the second highest behind the United States. The number of deaths stands at 182,553.

Meanwhile, 22 Covid-19 patients died at a hospital in Maharashtra state after their oxygen supply was interrupted by a leakage in a supply line, officials said.

Suraj Mandhar, the district collector, said the oxygen supply has since been resumed to other patients, in the Zakir Hussain Hospital in Nashik, a city in Maharashtra state, which is the worst-hit by the latest surge in coronavirus cases in the country.

Fire officer Sanjay Bairagi said the leakage was plugged by the fire service within 15 minutes, but there was supply disruption.

Police officer Surinder Sonone said the leak occurred in a pipe connecting the oxygen supply to the main tank in the hospital complex. Five of the 140 Covid-19 patients were shifted to another hospital, he added.

The state government ordered an investigation of the leak, state health minister Rajesh Tope said.

By Press Association