Journal : Global Times (Chinese) Date : Author : Huan Qiu Shi Bao special correspondent Xiao Yun Page No. : NA

According to statistics released by the Indian Ministry of Health, as of 8 am local time on the 16th, the cumulative number of confirmed covid cases in India crossed 5 million, reaching 5,020,360. In the past 24 hours, India has added 90,123 confirmed cases and 1,290 new deaths.

According to the “India Express” report, Indian Minister of Health Vardhan attended the Parliamentary meeting on the 14th and issued a statement on behalf of the government on the current epidemic situation, stating that in order to prevent and control the epidemic, India initiated a “national lockdown”  since March 24, effectively reducing 1.4 million to 2.9 million potential cases. However, the Indian opposition Congress Party and others questioned this, and Congress Party leader Anand Sharma publicly asked the government to provide a “scientific basis” for this conclusion.”India Today” issued a document on the 16th that with the number of confirmed cases exceeding 5 million, India needs to rethink its epidemic prevention and control strategies. The article said that India had previously adopted a nationwide prevention and control method similar to China, but the number of confirmed cases has now far exceeded that of China, and the “national lockdown” has also brought “side effects” such as a sharp economic decline.

Since September, India has reported about 1.3 million confirmed cases, accounting for about 27% of the total number of cases. Agence France-Presse stated that India has become the country with the highest number of new additions in a single day for some time. It took 167 days for India to break through the first 1 million cases. After that, it only took 21 days to rise to 2 million cases. After 29 days, it broke through 4 million cases. At the beginning of this month, the number of infections exceeded Brazil. “India Today” believes that maintaining this trend, India may surpass the United States in early October and become the country with the largest number of confirmed covid cases in the world. Many media also believe that India has exposed many shortcomings in the prevention and control of the epidemic, such as poor medical infrastructure and insufficient medical staff.

It is worth mentioning that Modi will celebrate his “70th birthday” on September 17. New Delhi TV said that to celebrate Modi’s birthday, the Bharatiya Janata Party has decided to organize service week activities around the number 70 throughout the country, such as “cleaning and distributing fruits in 70 locations in each region”. India’s Deccan Chronicle reported that a week ago, Bharatiya Janata party members, ministers and parliamentarians mobilized people to “voluntarily” release a selfie video celebrating Modi’s birthday. However, at this juncture of the epidemic, not everyone is in the mood to congratulate Modi. Rahul Gandhi, the leader of the Indian National Congress, has frequently questioned Modi’s anti-epidemic policy recently. “If you don’t count, no one will die. …The whole world is watching them die, but the government has no clue.”

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