China offers India assistance amid virus spike

#WeCantBreathe trends on Twitter as India reports over 330,000 cases, highest daily number since outbreak. China on humanitarian ground offers support to its rival.

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China on Friday offered assistance to India amid a worsening COVID-19 situation in the South Asian country.

According to state-run media reports, Beijing said communication is underway with India if they needed support and assistance.

“The Chinese government and people will firmly support #India in its fight against the #COVID19 pandemic and are willing to provide support and assistance in accordance with the needs of the Indian side,” Global Times quoted Lijian Zhao, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman, as saying.

India is currently facing a virus spike as the country reported 332,730 cases, the world’s highest single daily number since last year, according to local media.

With the new infections, the country total caseload has risen to 10.6 million, India Today weekly reported.

Read more: #IndiaNeedsOxygen: Pakistanis urge PM Imran Khan to help India with oxygen supply

India has also reported 2,263 more deaths, increasing the nationwide toll to 186,920.

Mass vaccinations

In a sign of how dangerously overstretched the hospitals are, people are using social media to appeal for medical supplies for their relatives.

On Monday night, a special “Oxygen Express” train left Mumbai to the industrial southern city of Visakhapatnam, carrying seven empty tanker trucks that should return full in four days.

Modi added that “all efforts are being made” to boost oxygen supplies.

Read more: Hong kong bans flights from Pakistan, India and Philippines

Experts have warned that religious festivals and packed state election rallies have become “superspreader” events — and some have said mass vaccinations are the only long-term solution.

India kicked off its inoculation drive in mid-January and has administered more than 127 million shots so far. From May, all adults will be able to get vaccinated, the government announced Monday.

Some local authorities have however been running short of supplies, and India has put the brakes on exports of the AstraZeneca shot. Meanwhile, India’s Bharat Biotech said Tuesday it is scaling up production of its homegrown Covaxin vaccine to 700 million doses per year.

Read more: Mumbai in lockdown as Indian vaccines run short

Covaxin is being administered alongside AstraZeneca’s shot in India, while approval has also been given for Russia’s Sputnik V.

Anadolu with additional input by GVS News Desk

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