Here is your ten-point cheat sheet on this big story:
This the second straight day that India has reported over 4 lakh cases. Last week, the country had hit a grim global record as daily cases passed the 4 lakh-mark in a first.
The country, which recorded just 15,510 fresh infections on March 1, has been reporting over 3 lakh new Covid cases every day for the last two weeks. More than 2.34 lakh people have died since the pandemic broke. Earlier this week, India's overall cases breached the two crore-mark.
Rajasthan and Kerala have also announced lockdown to tackle the Covid surge. While Rajasthan has announced a lockdown between May 10 and May 24, Kerala has announced strict restrictions between May 8 and May 16. Several states have imposed stringent measures to curb the spread of the virus.
India expanded the vaccination drive to all adults above 18 last week even as many states flagged shortage. Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday said the pace of vaccination should not be slowed down. "PM spoke about the need to sensitise states that the speed of vaccination doesn't come down. Citizens should be facilitated for vaccination despite lockdowns and healthcare workers involved in vaccination must not be diverted for other duties," a note from his office said.
Delhi must get at least 700 tonnes of oxygen every day, as requested by the government, to meet the needs of the city's patients, the Supreme Court told the centre on Thursday, in an important ruling. Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had said the city is getting roughly half its allocation of oxygen, while neighbouring BJP-ruled states were prioritised.
Delhi's positivity rate has dropped below 25 - to 24.29 per cent for the first time since April 18. On April 22 it hit a record high of 36.3 per cent, meaning one in three tests were returning Covid positive results. The national capital on Thursday night reported 19,133 new cases and 335 deaths in the previous 24 hours. That was the third time in four days daily new cases were below 20,000.
On Thursday night Mumbai civic authorities said the city would have more drive-in vaccination centres in each administrative zone, posssibly within 24 hours. Maharashtra got its first drive-in vaccination centre this week at Dadar, and its success has persuaded Mumbai to adopt the model. The Dadar centre can vaccinate around 5,000 people a day with minimum risk of infection.
Stories of patients struggling to get medical attention have been making global headlines. Yesterday, a coronavirus patient's family in Bengaluru had to sit on a protest outside the Karnataka assembly before they managed to get a hospital bed.
International support has been pouring in with the United States, the United Kingdom among other nations sending medical supplies.
American civil rights Reverend Jesse Jackson has urged US President Joe Biden to release 60 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine for India.
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