NEW DELHI (AP) – India on Tuesday reported its smallest daily increase in coronavirus infections in a week, with 83,809 more infected, and approaching 5 million patients with COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus.
The Health Ministry also reported 1,054 more deaths from the virus, for a total of 80,776 since the start of the pandemic.
With 4.93 million confirmed infections, India is the second country in the world with the most cases only behind the United States. Infections have followed an upward trend as authorities eased restrictions, with more than 600,000 new cases detected in the last week.
The state of Maharashtra, with more than one million infections, remains the most affected area in the country, followed by the regions of Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Uttar Pradesh.
India however has the highest number of recovered patients in the world, according to Johns Hopkins University. Its recovery rate is 77.8% and about 3.8 million people have already overcome the virus, according to the Ministry of Health.
More than 10 million migrant workers returned to their home states from various parts of the country during the strict quarantine imposed across the country, said the Indian parliament, which reconvened on Monday after more than five months closed due to the coronavirus. The institution did not have data on the number of deceased migrants.
A tide of people, penniless and fearful of starvation, left the cities for their villages when Prime Minister Narendra Modi ordered a nationwide quarantine on March 24. This unprecedented migratory movement was one of the main reasons why the virus has spread throughout the country.
The quarantine also caused a serious economic crisis. The Indian economy contracted almost 24% in the second quarter, the worst figure among the world’s major economies.
On the other hand, China reported eight new cases of coronavirus on Tuesday, all of them imported. Among the positives were two Burmese nationals who crossed the border to the Chinese city of Ruili. Myanmar has seen a spike in infections and on Friday enacted strict measures to curb the spread. The Chinese authorities isolated Ruili on Monday night: you cannot leave the city and residents must be confined to their homes for a week.
Additionally, all residents will be tested for the virus and the abundant illegal cross-border trade in the region will be stopped. The border was closed and additional restrictions were imposed on nearby villages. China has been without domestic infections for a month.
The contagion curve in South Korea remains downward after the third consecutive day with just over a hundred infected. The 106 new cases reported Tuesday bring the national total to 22,391, with 367 deaths. The government on Monday relaxed social distancing rules in the capital Seoul metropolitan area, the focus of the latest spike.