India is recording more cases of covid-19 than any other country

ON APRIL 7TH India detected more than 125,000 new cases of covid-19—more than any other country in the world. The same day neighbouring Bangladesh registered far fewer—just over 7,600—but that was nonetheless a record for the country. Pakistan, too, is suffering a surge in infections, with the president, prime minister and minister of defence among those afflicted. In all three countries, testing in rural areas is almost non-existent, so the official tally of cases is likely to be a drastic undercount. On its current trajectory, South Asia, home to a quarter of humanity, will soon eclipse the European Union as the centre of the pandemic. Having suffered almost 200,000 known deaths from the disease already, the region is on the verge of further tragedy.

Cases in India have been rising shockingly fast. They leapt from 15,000 a day to 100,000 a day in just a month. India now eclipses America and Brazil, the two next most afflicted countries, in terms of new infections (see chart). Just one of India’s 28 states, Maharashtra, accounts for half of these cases, suggesting that overall numbers will continue to surge as the wave spreads more widely around the country.

Bangladesh, India and Pakistan are all vaccinating as fast as they can, but given the scale of the task their efforts are too little and too late. India...

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