India surpassed Brazil as the country with the second-highest number of total coronavirus infections in the world—behind only the U.S.—after it hit another single-day record for newly reported cases.
The South Asian nation recorded 168,912 new cases over the past 24 hours, its health ministry said Monday, pushing its total since the pandemic began to nearly 13.53 million infections. Only the U.S. has logged more cases, with nearly 31.2 million, while Brazil has reported more than 13.48 million, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.
India’s death toll climbed by 904 fatalities to a total of 170,179, according to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.
Many Indian cities and states have imposed fresh restrictions as the country grapples with a new surge that has surpassed the first wave of infections, which peaked in September. Maharashtra, the hardest-hit state, and home to the financial capital of Mumbai, has imposed a nighttime curfew and weekend lockdown with restaurants and bars only open for takeout service. New Delhi also imposed a nighttime curfew until April 30.
India’s vaccination drive, meanwhile, is faltering. As demand outstrips supply, Maharashtra has been forced to shut down hundreds of vaccination centers, said Rajesh Tope, the state’s health minister. Hospitals in Mumbai and other hotspots have been forced to turn people away, prompting some to take to the streets in protest.
In April, Covid-19 vaccines were made available to anyone over the age of 45. Vaccinations, which were generally below 500,000 a day in February, jumped to more than four million on some days last week.
The demand is depleting the surplus stock that some states had. India, which was one of the world’s biggest exporters of vaccines in the first three months of the year, has temporarily halted almost all vaccine exports to focus on its domestic inoculation efforts.