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India's COVID-19 Death Toll Soars to Nearly 12,000 as Maharashtra, Delhi Add 'Backlog'

There were 10,974 new infections reported in the last 24 hours.

New Delhi: India registered the highest-ever spike of 2,003 COVID-19 fatalities, pushing country’s death toll to 11,903, while the number of cases rose to 3,54,065, with 10,974 infections being reported in the last 24 hours, according to Union health ministry data.

The sudden massive spike in the death toll has been explained by Maharashtra and Delhi adding ‘backlog’ fatalities to their data. While Maharashtra reported 81 new COVID-19 related deaths on Tuesday, the reconciliation of 1,328 ‘backlog’ fatalities saw the state’s total death toll rise to 5,537.

Delhi, similarly, added 437 deaths due to COVID-19 to its numbers on Tuesday, but only 93 of them took place over the 24 hours pertaining to the report. The other 344 took place across June, and a few even earlier.

The number of active cases stands at 1,55,227, while 1,86,934 people have recovered and one patient has migrated, according to the officially updated figure at 8 am.

Watch: ‘India Probably Has Tens of Millions of COVID-19 Infections Already’

“Thus, around 52.79% patients have recovered so far,” an official said. Though official spokespersons have been highlighting the Indian recovery rate, they do not mention that the global recovery rate is also the same or slightly better.

India registered over 10,000 cases for the sixth day in a row. The total number of confirmed cases include foreigners.

India is the fourth worst-hit nation by the pandemic after the US, Brazil and Russia. According to the Johns Hopkins University, which has been compiling COVID-19 data from all over the world, India is at the eighth position in terms of the death toll.

State-wise deaths

Of the 2,003 new deaths, Maharashtra accounts for the highest 1,409 fatalities followed by Delhi at 437, Tamil Nadu at 49, Gujarat 28, Uttar Pradesh and Haryana 18 each, Madhya Pradesh 11, West Bengal 10, Rajasthan 7, Karnataka 5 and Telangana 4.

Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Jammu and Kashmir, Jharkhand, Punjab, Puducherry and Uttarakhand have reported one death each.

Of the total 11,903 deaths, Maharashtra tops the tally with 5,537 fatalities followed by Delhi with 1,837 deaths, Gujarat with 1,533, Tamil Nadu with 528, West Bengal with 495, Madhya Pradesh with 476, Uttar Pradesh with 417, Rajasthan with 308 and Telangana with 191 deaths.

The COVID-19 death toll reached 118 in Haryana, 94 in Karnataka, 88 in Andhra Pradesh, 72 in Punjab, 63 in Jammu and Kashmir, 41 in Bihar, 25 in Uttarakhand, 20 in Kerala and 11 in Odisha. Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh have registered 9 deaths each while Assam and Himachal Pradesh have recorded 8 deaths each.

Chandigarh and Puducherry have reported 6 deaths each while Meghalaya, Tripura and Ladakh have reported 1 fatality each, according to the Health Ministry.

More than 70% of the deaths have happened due to co-morbidities, the ministry said.

State-wise cases

Maharashtra has reported maximum number of cases at 1,13,445 followed by Tamil Nadu at 48,019, Delhi at 44,688, Gujarat at 24,577, Uttar Pradesh at 14,091, Rajasthan at 13,216 and West Bengal at 11,909, according to the health ministry’s data.

The number of COVID-19 cases has gone up to 11,083 in Madhya Pradesh, 8,272 in Haryana, 7,530 in Karnataka and 6,778 in Bihar. It has risen to 6,841 in Andhra Pradesh, 5,406 in Telangana, 5,298 in Jammu and Kashmir, 4,319 in Assam and 4,163 in Odisha.

Punjab has reported 3,371 novel coronavirus cases so far, while Kerala has 2,622 cases.

A total of 1,942 people have been infected by the virus in Uttarakhand, 1,839 in Jharkhand, 1,781 in Chhattisgarh, 1,092 in Tripura, 649 in Ladakh, 629 in Goa, 560 in Himachal Pradesh and 500 in Manipur.

Also read: Surviving COVID-19, a Fire, 2 Hospitals and a Struggling System: A Patient Speaks

Chandigarh has registered 358 COVID-19 cases, Puducherry has 216 cases, Nagaland has 179, Mizoram has 121, Arunachal Pradesh has 95, Sikkim has 70, Dadar and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu together have reported 45 COVID-19 cases.

Meghalaya and Andaman and Nicobar Islands have registered 44 infections so far.

Global numbers

Across the world, there have now been more than 8 million cases of the viral infection, with 8,173,940 confirmed cases reported as of Wednesday morning.

According to Johns Hopkins University, the global death toll due to COVID-19 stands at 443,685. Another 3,955,169 people have recovered from the disease.

In many countries, official data includes only deaths reported in hospitals, not those in homes or nursing homes.

The US has recorded 2,137,731 confirmed cases of COVID-19, the respiratory illness caused by the coronavirus. Brazil is in second place with 923,189 cases, followed by Russia (544,725), India (354,065) and the UK (299,600).

The US has also recorded the highest death toll, with 116,963 fatalities so far. The death toll has also been high in Brazil (45,241), the UK (42,054), Italy (34,405), France (29,550) and Spain (27,136).

Honduran president says he is infected with coronavirus

Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernandez has been diagnosed with the coronavirus, is receiving treatment and will work remotely and through his aides, he said late on Tuesday.

“As president of the nation and a responsible citizen, I want to communicate that during the weekend I started to feel some discomfort and today I was diagnosed as having been infected with COVID-19,” Hernandez said in a televised speech.

“They have recommended rest but I will continue working remotely and through my aides.”

Hernandez had mild symptoms, started receiving treatment and is feeling better, he added.

He will stay in isolation under observation to decide where treatment will continue, as recommended by his doctors, the government said in a statement. He is taking a cocktail of drugs that includes microdacyn, azithromycin, ivermectin and zinc.

His wife and two aides, also diagnosed with the virus, are all being treated.

Mexico’s coronavirus death surge puts testing regime under the microscope

Mexico went into the coronavirus outbreak insisting it would beat the pandemic without mass testing, but with deaths surging as it prepares to exit lockdown, the strategy looks increasingly untenable.

Mexico’s coronavirus czar, Deputy Health Minister Hugo Lopez-Gatell, has doggedly eschewed widespread testing for new cases in favor of a lighter regime based on a model drawn up over a decade ago, arguing it made more efficient use of medical resources.

Yet as deaths and cases mount, Lopez-Gatell has repeatedly back-pedalled on when the pandemic would peak, prompting opposition-run states to test more to see how widely the virus has spread.

Government allies are also breaking ranks, and even President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, who has faced criticism for downplaying the severity of the pandemic, has hinted he backs a broader approach to testing.

As well as playing down the need for mass testing, the government was slow to decentralise diagnostics, doctors say. Now that more private medical centres run tests, thousands of new cases are emerging, and not all appear in federal numbers.

(With agency inputs)