NEW DELHI — India reported a global record of more than 314,000 new infections Thursday as a grim coronavirus surge in the world’s second-most populous country has overwhelmed a fragile health care system.
The new cases raise India’s total past 15.9 million cases, second to the United States.
A large number of hospitals across the country complained of acute shortage of beds, medicines and are running on dangerously low levels of oxygen.
The New Delhi High Court on Wednesday ordered the government to divert the oxygen supply from industrial use to hospitals. Responding to a petition by a New Delhi hospital seeking their intervention, the judges said, “Beg, borrow or steal, it is a national emergency.”
The government is rushing oxygen tankers to replenish hospitals.
The Times of India newspaper says that the previous highest daily case count of 307,581 was reported in the U.S. on Jan. 8.