New Delhi: One of the world’s worst hit countries with massive death toll, on Saturday, recorded 50,000 fatalities from the pandemic in just 12 days after going past the 2.5-lakh mark. As many as 3 lakh people have now succumbed to Covid-19 in India’s official records.
The country has recorded 1 lakh deaths from the virus in the past 26 days, becoming the only country in the world where the Covid toll, in terms of milestones of 50,000, has risen by 1,00,000 in under 30 days. At the height of its third wave in December-January, the death toll in the US had increased from 3.5 lakh to 4.5 lakh in 31 days, as per worldometers.info.
India has the third highest cumulative Covid deaths in the world after the US (over 6 lakh deaths) and Brazil (4.5 lakh). Deaths during the devastating second wave in the country now account for nearly half of all fatalities at 1.48 lakh in under three months since February 15.
In May alone, more than 92,000 deaths have been recorded in 23 days so far. That’s almost twice the toll in April, when 48,768 deaths were reported, which was a record for any month till then. Several experts have said many deaths during the second wave had not been counted in the official statistics, pointing to major discrepancies in the number of Covid-protocol cremations across cities and the Covid fatalities reported there in the past couple of months.
While the number of fresh cases has declined steadily after infections in the country peaked around May 8, the daily toll has not decreased by much. The seven-day rolling average of daily cases was down 32% since the peak on May 8, when the average stood at over 3.91 lakh. On May 22, the index was at 2.64 lakh.
By contrast, the seven-day average of daily deaths has dipped by just 5% since hitting a peak of 4,040 on May 16. It stood at 3,838 on May 22. For this calculation, “backdated” fatalities declared over the past few days in Maharashtra were not counted in the daily numbers.
Maharashtra has recorded by far the highest number of Covid-related deaths in the country, with 88,620 fatalities so far. Of these, 37,068 have taken place in the second wave, that is, after February 15. Maharashtra, along with Tamil Nadu are the only states, among five with the highest cumulative death toll, where second fatalities have been lower than those in the first wave.
Karnataka has the second highest Covid toll in the country at 25,284, of which 13,017 have taken place after February 15. Similarly, of the 23,202 deaths reported in Delhi since the start of the pandemic, 12,309 have taken place in the second wave. In UP, 10,520 out of the total toll of 19,224 have come in the second wave. The corresponding figures in TN are 8,043 out of a total of 20,468.
On May 22, India recorded 2,23,234 fresh Covid cases, down from 2.4 lakh on the previous day. There were 3,713 deaths in the country, around the same as on Friday (3,745).