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Indian authorities announced on Friday a “very slow” easing of the lockdown in the capital, New Delhi, as coronavirus infections decreased in major cities after weeks of lockdown.
But rural areas are now seeing the brunt An increase in cases overwhelmed the healthcare system At least 160,000 people have been killed since the beginning of March.
Arvind Kejriwal, Chief Minister of Delhi, said that from Monday construction and factory work could resume “taking into account the poorest segment of our society, workers and daily workers.”
“We are starting the reopening process very slowly. We will reassess it in a week, based on opinions of experts and people,” he said.
Daily infections have been reported across India More than half of the more than 400,000 earlier this month, according to official statistics.
Delhi on Friday reported about 1,100 new infections in the past 24 hours, down from about 25,000 daily cases when the lockdown was announced six weeks ago.
The destructive increase has been blamed on the new virus variants, and the government has allowed most activities to return to normal including mass religious and political gatherings.
Coronavirus patients have died in large numbers outside of hospitals or at home due to a lack of beds, medical oxygen and medicines, leading to a torrent of desperate appeals on social media.
Since mid-April, hundreds of Covid-19 patients have also become infected frequently A fatal and very rare fungal infection, or “black fungus”.
Several other parts of India including the states of Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka are now also considering easing activity restrictions.
Meanwhile, India’s vaccination program is only making slow progress due to shortages, confusion and quarrels between the central government and state authorities.
So far, about 160 million people, which is equivalent to only 12.5 per cent of the Indian population, have received one dose and 45 million, or 3.4 per cent, two shots.
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