Monday Apr 19, 2021
India has reported a record rise in coronavirus infections of 273,810, with 15 million total cases across the country on Monday.
The country reported 1619 new fatalities, taking the country-wide death toll to 178,769.
The Indian capital New Delhi will be under a strict lockdown for six days starting on Monday night, the city's Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said, adding the healthcare system was at a breaking point because of the worsening COVID-19 outbreak.
The city was also facing acute shortages of hospital beds, medical oxygen supplies, and key medicines such as the anti-viral Remdesivir, Kejriwal said.
In recent weeks, criticism has mounted over how the federal government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi has handled the health crisis, as religious festivals and election rallies continue despite reports of shortages of hospital beds, oxygen cylinders, and vaccination doses.
After imposing one of the world's strictest lockdowns for nearly three months last year, India’s government relaxed almost all curbs by the beginning of 2021, although many regions like New Delhi and state of Maharashtra have introduced localised restrictions.