India on Thursday passed eight million coronavirus cases and the world’s second-worst-hit country is bracing for a new wave in the pandemic.
There have now been 8,040,203 cases and 120,527 deaths across the country of 1.3 billion people, according to the latest government figures.The United States has seen 9.1 million cases and more than 230,000 deaths.
India has one of the world’s lowest death rates and the number of new infections has slowed in recent days but authorities are braced for a new surge after Diwali, the country’s most important religious festival on November 14 and with the onset of winter.
New Delhi recorded 5,000 new cases on Wednesday, which was the highest daily figure since the outbreak of the pandemic. Officials have warned that the capital could see more than 10,000 cases a day in the next wave.
Financial capital Mumbai, India’s worst-hit city with more than 250,000 cases and over 10,000 deaths, is currently adding about 2,000 cases a day.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has warned the population in recent speeches that they are being “careless” in giving up social distancing and other precautions.