The Coronavirus Crisis – India 2021


Amid the brutal second wave of COVID 19 in India, the nation is battling a catastrophic surge of the virus. Whilst this article is being written, India has reported at least 300,000 positive results.  Over the past 48 hours the nation has faced 357,316 new cases with a mortality rate of 3,293 in a day bringing the total death rate to 201,187 and the total number of cases are soaring past 20 million. The mutation B1.617 has crippled the healthcare system; hospitals across major cities are struggling as they are running out of available beds and oxygen supplies. Many hospitals are full and have to turn away patients, forcing families to drive miles to find a hospital bed. Furthermore, people are dying on streets outside the hospitals. Across the country, streets outside medical infrastructure are reaching their carrying capacity as there has been a flock of ill patients and their families pleading to arrange beds and oxygen supplies[1]. A man stated “We have been roaming around for three days searching for a bed,” as his wife was motionless on the pavement. In a small town in India, a 62-year-old woman travelled to a hospital in the middle of the night however she was unable to be admitted and receive treatment. As a result, she unfortunately passed away at 8 am. Following her demise, a fight broke out between her son and the security guard. Her son slit the guard’s wrist due to frustration about his mother not receiving admission. This further resulted into more attacks until police intervened[2].

Due to the rise of deaths, there have been a rise in demand for places in crematoriums. Families have had to wait hours before being allowed to cremate and they have also been asked to help with cremations by piling wood and assisting in other rituals. In Delhi, workers have been forced to build makeshift funeral pyres, with parks and other empty spaces being utilised for cremations.

The government is facing pressure to impose a nationwide lockdown; however, they feel it is a threat to the economy. States in India, such as Maharashtra, Goa Rajhastan and a more are under lockdown and many other areas have tight restrictions such as curfew along with non-essential retail shut. On the 4th of May, the Indian Premier League was announced to be suspended since tge majority of the cricket players contracted Covid-19[3].  Nations such as USA, UK, Australia, Germany, France, and China are shipping oxygen ventilators, concentrators and PPE to India and Pfizer has donated 70 million worth of vaccines to India[4].