Opposition chief calls for lockdown as India’s coronavirus cases cross 20 million

Elias Hubbard
May 5, 2021

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said that India's fight against increasing coronavirus cases will be reinforced by the new United Kingdom government support announcement of additional ventilators in addition to 200 ventilators, 495 oxygen concentrators and three oxygen generation units the United Kingdom sent to India last week.

Amid the unprecedented rise in coronavirus cases in India, COVID-19 assistance, in form of oxygen concentrators, ventilators, and other medical aid continued to come from countries around the world at the beginning of May, as the infections in the country reached the grim mark of 20 million cases on Tuesday. Experts believe both figures are an undercount.

"The only way to stop the spread of corona now is a full lockdown.GOI's inaction is killing many innocent people", Gandhi, a Congress member of parliament, said on Twitter, referring to the government.

The court summoned two Home Ministry officials for Wednesday's hearing.

"These are hard times, especially in India, and while we have tried to bring in some positivity and cheer, it is imperative that the tournament is now suspended and everyone goes back to their families and loved ones in these trying times", the IPL said in a statement.

Raghav Chaddha, a spokesman for the Aam Aadmi Party governing New Delhi, said hospitals were getting only 40% of their 700 metric tons (772 USA tons) requirements through the federal government, and the local government was arranging additional supplies to meet the shortfall and setting up new oxygen plants. Many people have died in ambulances and auto parks waiting for a bed or oxygen.

Bodies have been piling up at cremation grounds and in graveyards with relatives waiting for hours for the last rites.

"Each and every one of the more than 6,500 jobs we have announced today will help families and communities build back from coronavirus and boost the British and Indian economies".

India's opposition has called for a nationwide lockdown, but the government is reluctant to impose a shutdown for fear of the economic fallout, although several states have imposed social curbs.

The most populous state of Uttar Pradesh, with 200 million people, implemented a five-day lockdown this week.

Efforts to scale up the vaccination drive are hampered by the shortage of doses. India is by far the largest market the United Kingdom has committed to negotiating a trade deal with to date.

There's hope in India's indigenous vaccine, which was found to neutralise a virulent Covid-19 variant circulating in 21 countries.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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