India on Tuesday recorded 4,529 Covid-19 deaths, the highest single daily death toll so far in the country so far, authorities said on Wednesday when the virus spread across the country’s vast interior.
The previous deadliest day for a single country was recorded in the United States in January, when 4,468 people died.
Many experts believe that the actual number of deaths and infections in India, a country of 1.4 billion people, is even higher, and evidence has emerged across the country of a large number of people dying from Covid who are not officially is not counted.
India on Tuesday reported 267,000 new cases, raising the official case to 25 million, with more than 280,000 deaths.
While infections appear to be slowing down in some of India’s urban centers, including New Delhi and Mumbai, the virus is spreading in rural areas. There are limited tests, the medical infrastructure is pitifully underfunded and overwhelmed, and some leaders have tried to minimize the damage, and sometimes even cries out to criminalize aid.
Experts warn that a decline in new daily cases is likely to be a reflection of the success of urban closures, and that the virus is still spreading unnoticed. Hospitals did not have enough supplies, and the vaccination campaign was slow. The death toll has remained more than 4,000 for a few days, suggesting that even if new infections occur in urban centers, those previously infected will die.
The virus has also hit the doctors and medical workers of India very hard.
More than 1,000 doctors have died from Covid since the pandemic began last year. The death rate has been much higher, and the age of victims has been much younger, since the second wave of infections began in the spring. According to the Indian Medical Association, more than 260 doctors have died since April.