By Spy Uganda Correspondent
India, in the last 24 hours, recorded 368,147 new Covid-19 cases, taking the cumulative tally to 1,99,25,604. As many as 3,417 new coronavirus-related fatalities were also recorded, taking the nationwide death toll to 218,959. Nearly 700 of these came from Maharashtra, 400 from Delhi, and about 300 from Uttar Pradesh.
Meanwhile, while taking note of Delhi’s dire situation, where 12 people died in a hospital owing to a shortage in oxygen supply, the Supreme Court has asked the Centre to ensure that the “shortage be addressed on or before midnight of 3 May 2021”.
The court also asked the Centre to “immediately” create buffer stocks of medical oxygen to address any future shortage. It also urged the Centre and states “to consider imposing a lockdown to curb the virus in the second wave in the interest of public welfare”.
States such as Punjab, Odisha and Goa have, among others, also taken the lockdown route to curb the spread of the virus.
While Punjab imposed stricter Covid curbs by shutting down all the shops, except those selling essential items, till May 15, Odisha has announced a 14-day lockdown during which residents will be allowed to step out to shops within 500 metres of their homes to buy vegetables between 6 am and 12 noon.
In Goa, restrictions imposed in the state to contain the spread of Covid-19 will be in force till May 10. The government’s four-day lockdown was in force until the morning of May 3.
On the other hand, 13 Opposition leaders, including Congress leader Sonia Gandhi, former prime minister HD Deve Gowda and Uddhav Thackeray, in a joint statement on Sunday, asked the Centre to launch a free mass vaccination drive across the country with a budgetary allocation of 35,000 crore. The leaders have also asked the Centre to provide uninterrupted oxygen supply to all hospitals and health centres.