Photographs: As COVID crisis surges in India, tragedy spreads

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Kolkata: The scene in front of a hospital for COVID-19 patients. Credit: Debarchan Chatterjee/NurPhoto/Getty Images
Kolkata: The scene in front of a hospital for COVID-19 patients. Credit: Debarchan Chatterjee/NurPhoto/Getty Images

[India now] accounts for almost half of new [COVID] cases worldwide. Experts say a combination of factors gave rise to the explosion in cases: new variants of the virus, including one first detected in India, that are thought to be more transmissible; a weak government response; and large public gatherings. Images from across the country show the tremendous toll.

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The average deaths per day are nearing 2,500, and the number continues to climb, pushing cremation facilities and cemeteries past their limits. Overall, the Indian government has reported around 195,000 deaths from COVID-19, but analysts say the total is likely much greater.

Ghaziabad: Manoj Kumar sits beside his mother, Vidhya Devi, as she receives oxygen inside her car at a Sikh temple. The temple began offering free oxygen to hundreds of patients desperate for relief as they waited for hospital beds. Credit: Danish Siddiqui/Reuters
Ahmedabad: Outside a mortuary, a woman mourns with her son after her husband died from COVID-19. Journalists and health experts warn that the number of dead is being severely undercounted as officials try to prevent panic. Credit: Amit Dave/Reuters
New Delhi: Some crematoriums are continuously running their furnaces. Facilities have begun performing mass cremations, such as this one in the capital city. Credit: Danish Siddiqui/Reuters
Mumbai: Notices announcing that Covishield, the India-made version of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, is out of stock are taped outside a vaccination center. The central government announced it would provide hundreds of millions of dollars to ramp up manufacturing amid a severe vaccine shortage. Credit: Indranil Mukherjee/AFP/Getty Images

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