As India bears witness to the horrors unfolding during the second wave of the coronavirus, Prime Minister Narendra Modi in January had declared India as one of the countries that had successfully controlled coronavirus.
“India took a proactive public participation approach and developed a COVID-specific health infrastructure and trained its resources to fight COVID,” PM Modi had claimed whilst addressing the World Economic Forum’s Davos Dialogue virtually on 28 January 2021.
Meanwhile, India on Friday, 23 April, reported the world's biggest-ever daily surge in COVID-19 infections on Thursday, 22 April, with over 3.32 lakh new cases recorded in the last 24 hours.
Presently, the country’s daily infection tally has reached an all-time high, with over two lakh COVID-19 cases being recorded everyday since 15 April. The first wave, in comparison, had seen a peak of 97,400 infections recorded in 24-hours.
The second wave has not only broken records in the rate of infections, but has had a catastrophic effect on the country’s health infrastructure, with several states and Union territories, including New Delhi reporting an acute shortage of medical oxygen, hospital beds, medications, and other health facilities.
Several hospitals in the national capital resorted to appealing to the High Court, pleading for help as they ran out of oxygen supply in their units. As a result, in an urgent hearing, the Delhi High Court on Wednesday, 21 April, had directed the Central government to ensure the supply of medical oxygen by “whatever means required”.
Amid the unprecedented and ill-managed spike in infections, crematoriums in states, notably Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh, reported of being overburdened.
Until a few days, the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party was holding election rallies in poll-bound West Bengal, where hundreds ignored COVID-19 guidelines and were seen not wearing masks and flouting social distancing measures.