more than 100,000 dead in India, Madrid in partial closure

The Covid-19 has officially killed more than 100,000 people in India. It is the third highest death toll in the world, behind the United States (over 208,000 dead) and Brazil (144,000). Since the arrival of the pandemic, 6.47 million cases of contamination have been recorded by the Indian Ministry of Health, and the country should in the coming weeks overtake the United States and become the country with the largest number contagions, while the virus seems out of control.

  • Doubts about the reliability of Indian figures

The scale of this toll is not unusually high for the second most populous country in the world (1.3 billion people). It would even be rather the opposite, according to specialists: with around 73 deaths per million inhabitants at the present time, India is proportionately little harshly affected in comparison with countries like France (480), Sweden (580), the United States (637) or Brazil (690).

This is why there are doubts about the reliability of the Indian figures. “We don’t know how reliable the death rates are in India”, comments virologist T. Jacob John to Agence France-Presse (AFP). “India does not have a public health surveillance system that documents all cases of illness and death in real time”, he said.

As the number of cases continues to rise, the government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi continues to open up Asia’s third largest economy. The strict lockdown imposed in March not only failed to stop the spread of the virus, but also pushed millions of people into poverty, with the loss of their jobs. In the last quarter, India’s economy – which before the pandemic was struggling – fell 24%, one of the steepest declines among any major economies.

  • Madrid in partial closure

In Spain, Madrid woke up in partial closure on Saturday – a move meant to curb the spread of the epidemic, but difficult to enforce. Since the evening of Friday, the inhabitants of the capital and nine surrounding municipalities particularly affected by the virus can no longer leave their municipality for reasons of first necessity, such as going to work, studying or going to the doctor.

They can, however, move freely within their city and do not have to stay at home as during the very strict confinement decreed in March. The authorities, however, called for all unnecessary travel to be avoided. This type of restriction had already affected a million people for several days in areas of the region where the rate of contagion is the highest.

The partial closure of Madrid, ordered by the central government of socialist Pedro Sanchez, had been the subject of a standoff for two weeks with the government of the region, flagship of the Popular Party (PP, right).

The questions which now arise are the real effectiveness of these measures, insufficient according to many epidemiologists, and especially the capacity of the authorities to control the entries and exits of each city in an agglomeration where there are two million trips each. day.

  • Thousands of people expected for “anti-mask” rallies in Germany

Thousands of people who oppose the wearing of masks and restrictive measures against the pandemic are expected in Konstanz (southwestern Germany) for a weekend of protests under heavy police protection amid fears of overflows.

On Saturday, a huge human chain must be organized on the shores of the lake, on the initiative of “Free thinkers”, a motley gathering of opponents of measures related to the Covid-19 pandemic, made up of anti-vaccine activists, conspirators, citizens genuinely concerned about the restrictions related to Covid-19, but also, and increasingly according to the authorities, supporters of the extreme right. Two protests with tens of thousands of people had already taken place in Berlin during the summer.

These parades take place in the midst of an upsurge in contamination in Germany, a country that has been rather spared by the new coronavirus so far. On Saturday the number of new infections in twenty-four hours was above 2,500, the April level. Chancellor Angela Merkel, who says she is very concerned about this increase, announced on Tuesday new restrictions, particularly on private parties, with fines for offenders who do not respect certain rules.

Our selection of articles on the coronavirus

The World with AFP

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