India set another world record for coronavirus cases Friday, registering 386,452 infections in the past 24 hours.
The country’s caseload has now reached 18.7 million, while overall fatalities have risen to 208,330, including 3,498 new deaths, said the Health Ministry.
India has been witnessing an exponential rise in infections. Since April 22, the country has been registering over 300,000 daily cases, which has brought the country’s health system to near collapse, resulting in an acute shortage of beds, oxygen and treatment drugs.
Along with the rising number of cases, the number of daily fatalities has witnessed a massive increase across the country.
The capital New Delhi, which has been reporting a huge shortage of oxygen at hospitals for several days, late Thursday again reported its highest ever number of fatalities on a single day due to the coronavirus.
The rising deaths have also strained crematoriums and burial centers. In New Delhi, with round-the-clock cremations and burials taking place, authorities are now even exploring new sites to conduct cremations.
The Ministry of Home Affairs issued orders to all states and union territories Thursday to implement the necessary containment measures to curb the spread of infection. More cities have also announced weekend lockdowns.
Amid the crisis, foreign medical aid from various countries continues to arrive in India.
Early Friday morning, flights from a few countries including the US carrying medical aid arrived in in the country.
“The first of several emergency COVID-19 relief shipments from the United States has arrived in India! Building on over 70 years of cooperation, the United States stands with India as we fight the COVID-19 pandemic together,” the US Embassy in New Delhi wrote on its Twitter account.
On Thursday, the Ministry of External Affairs said that more than 40 countries have offered assistance to India, and in the coming days, the country will receive oxygen generating plants and oxygen concentrators from abroad.