A healthcare worker collects a swab sample from a man in Old Delhi, India. Adnan Abidi/Reuters
Gulf Today Report
As New Delhi battles its worst phase in the pandemic, Indian authorities draw up plans to reinstate some curbs, such as lockdowns of some markets, if necessary, although elsewhere in the nation new infections are falling.
India recorded 38,617 new coronavirus infections, taking its tally to 8.9 million, health ministry data showed on Wednesday.
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India hopes five locally-tested vaccines will help it to control COVID-19, as those developed by Pfizer and Moderna may not be available to it in big quantities soon.
The south Asian nation’s infections are the second highest in the world after the United States, but they have slowed from a September peak, despite celebrations of several major festivals that authorities had feared could trigger a spike.
Deaths rose by 474 in the last 24 hours, taking the toll to 130,993, the ministry added.
A year ago, India had observed what Prime Minister Narendra Modi called a people’s curfew, marking the start of a chaotic nationwide lockdown in a bid to contain the virus. With 11.6 million cases, India is now the worst-affected country after the United States and Brazil.
India’s overall caseload of 12.04 million - the world’s biggest outside the United States and Brazil - had been falling steadily since a peak in late September, but increased public gatherings and travel are causing a spurt at a time when a majority of Indians are yet to be vaccinated.
The country’s tally dipped below the 60,000 mark after three days, a Reuters tally showed, with its richest state, Maharashtra, accounting for more than 31,000 of the 56,211 cases reported in the last 24 hours. Deaths in the last 24 hours stood at 271,
The authorities said that after the issuance of the visit visa, the tourist must enter the country within 60 days from the date of issuance, and the validity of the entry permit will be 30 days or 60 days, depending on the visa sought.
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