India posts record daily rise in coronavirus deaths

a group of people sitting on a bus: Spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Mumbai © Reuters/NIHARIKA KULKARNI Spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Mumbai

(Reuters) - India's coronavirus deaths rose by a record 3,780 during the last 24 hours, a day after it became the second country to cross the grim milestone of 20 million infections after the United states.

Daily infections rose by 382,315 on Wednesday, health ministry data showed. Government modelling had pointed to a peak by Wednesday, a few days earlier than thought, since the virus has spread faster than expected.

The surge of the highly infectious Indian variant of the coronavirus has seen hospitals runs out of beds and oxygen and left morgues and crematoriums overflowing. Many people have died in ambulances and car parks waiting for a bed or oxygen.

Two "oxygen express" trains reached the capital Delhi on Wednesday carrying desperately needed liquid oxygen, Minister of Railways Piyush Goyal said on Twitter. Over 25 trains have so far delivered oxygen to different parts of India.

a man standing in front of a door: Spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Mumbai © Reuters/NIHARIKA KULKARNI Spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Mumbai

India's government says there are enough oxygen supplies but distribution has been hindered by transport problems.

A two-judge bench of the Delhi High Court has been holding almost daily video conferences to hear petitions from hospitals seeking oxygen and invoking India's constitutional right to protection of life.

India's surge in infections has coincided with a dramatic drop in vaccinations due to supply and delivery problems.

At least three states, including Maharashtra, home to the commercial capital of Mumbai, have reported a scarcity of vaccines, shutting down some inoculation centres.


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India posts record daily rise in coronavirus deaths