With new variants of Covid-19 spreading faster than ever before in several parts of the world, the global corona cases have now topped 149 million.
According to Johns Hopkins University (JHU), the total global case count reached 149,206,501 while the death toll climbed to 3,146,284 on Thursday morning.
The US, the world's worst-hit country in terms of cases and deaths, have recorded 32,229,317 cases with 574,326 fatalities to date, as per the JHU data.
Neighbouring India’s total Covid case count is fast approaching the 18-million mark. The country’s caseload and fatalities stand at 17, 997,267 and 201,187, respectively, as of Thursday morning.
India had thought the worst was over when cases ebbed in September. But infections began increasing in February, and on Wednesday, 362,757 new confirmed cases, a global record, pushed the country’s total past 17.9 million, second only to the U.S.
Local media have reported discrepancies between official state tallies of the dead and actual numbers of bodies in crematoriums and burial grounds. Many crematoriums have spilled over into parking lots and other empty spaces as blazing funeral pyres light up the night sky, reports AP.
Brazil on Wednesday registered 3,163 more deaths from Covid-19 in the past 24 hours, raising the national count to 398,185, the world's second-highest corona death toll after the US, the Ministry of Health said.
The ministry said that tests detected 79,726 new Covid-19 cases, taking its nationwide tally to 14,521,289.
April has been the month with the most deaths since the outbreak of the pandemic in the Latin American nation, with about 70,000 fatalities having been reported to date, compared with 66,000 deaths for March.
Situation in Bangladesh
Bangladesh on Wednesday reported 77 more coronavirus-related deaths and 2,955 new cases as the country grapples with the second wave of the virus.
The daily infection rate dropped to 10.48 percent from Tuesday’s 12.51 percent but the mortality rate rose to 1.50 percent.
As of Wednesday, 754,614 cases and 11,305 deaths have been recorded, the Directorate General of Health Services said in a handout.
The number of recoveries now stand at 672,319, according to the directorate.
Bangladesh reported its first coronavirus cases on March 8 last year and the first death on the 18th of that month.
The surge in Covid infections prompted the government to go for a lockdown from early April. Having failed to achieve the intended result, it imposed a complete lockdown from April 11 and extended it to April 28.
On Wednesday, the government issued a circular extending the lockdown till May 5, as there is no improvement in the Covid-19 situation.
However, shopping malls will remain open from 10am to 8pm during the extended period, he said.
Bangladesh launched a vaccination drive on February 7 with Oxford-AstraZeneca doses it acquired from the Serum Institute of India.
Bangladesh signed an agreement with Serum for 30 million doses. But a record number of cases in India has made the delivery of the doses uncertain.
However,BDGHS chief Prof ABM Khurshid Alam has assured citizens that Bangladesh will get 2.1 million doses of the vaccine by the first week of May.