Why is the govt underreporting COVID deaths all over India?

Mafazah Sharafuddin
May 5, 2021

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There have been several claims of undercounting the number of COVID deaths on the part of the government. This is a result of several factors, but most significantly, the number of corpses piling up in crematoriums and burial grounds. According to those who run crematoriums, the number of deaths due to COVID sent for cremation is much higher than what is disclosed by the government.
 
This issue isn’t limited to any one state, as there have been reports of the same in several states, including Karnataka, UP and the capital, Delhi. The crisis of having too many bodies and insufficient means to dispose of them is making people notice. NGOs are helping with cremations outside crematoriums, in parks etc. The crematoriums themselves are working towards building more cremation platforms. 

People running burial grounds and crematoriums are not turning people away. This has led to long queues for the same. In an interview with NDTV, a man who had lost his father to COVID said, “Earlier we were struggling to get oxygen, now we are struggling for cremation. The Government is useless.”

The owners of certain crematoriums state that those who die at home are not reported as COVID deaths in an official capacity, despite having succumbed to COVID. Several people are at home due to a lack of hospital beds and oxygen. They are being turned away from the hospitals. 

There have been mixed reactions to these claims. Most state governments are paying it no heed, and continuing to report deaths as they did prior to it. Adithyanath, however, has reacted with having the open sides of Rajghat covered up with cloth and plastic banners. This blocks the view to the cremation grounds and any bodies that might be piling up there. The banners claim that photography and videography of the cremations within the grounds would be considered criminal activity. It cites religious sanctity as its reason. 

The situation is dire. Overwhelming evidence states that the number of deaths of people diagnosed with COVID may be much higher than that being reported. This does not even begin to count the fact that there are plenty of people unable to get tested. This paints a truly grim picture of the COVID situation in India. 

The Madras HC on Monday severely reprimanded the Election Commission for allowing campaign rallies to take place during the pandemic. They went as far to say “Your institution is singularly responsible for the second wave of Covid-19. Election Commission officers should be booked on murder charges probably.”

The Co-Win portal and the announcement of vaccines for those aged 18-44 followed by the lack of production is another factor causing people to raise their voice. There are far too many accusations of improper administration for it to be brushed off without address. 

A report in the Financial Times stated that the, “numbers of Covid victims who have been cremated are 10x larger than official Covid death counts in same areas.” The state India is in is capturing global attention. 

The situation right now calls for many questions. What are the true numbers? How many decisions, like the EC’s decision to give parties the go ahead, were promoted by political reasons? How many were financially motivated? Where does public welfare stand among the list of reasons?

The glaring question, of course, is why?

Why is the government underreporting the COVID deaths all over the country?

The number of deaths, the state of the hospitals, the lack of vaccines, and the political rallies etc. all point towards one thing. Inefficient administration. The possibility that the underreporting is a ploy by the government to seem like they have a better handle on the situation is becoming more and more likely. 

It isn’t a new concept for governments to cover up things leading up to the election. There are thousands of cartoons that just speak about deceit before the election. 

It is an insidious idea, but that does not make it less likely. This is a matter of national and global importance. Underreporting the deaths due to COVID could skew research studying the fatality of this wave of the virus. It is also vital that the citizen see the gravity of the situation. The government must address the disparity in the numbers and provide clarity to the citizens.

Comments

MOHAMED S SULTAN
 - 
Friday, 7 May 2021

This is man made problem.
We(You) paid very dearly as the consequences of choosing our governments.
At least learn from this UNFORGETTABLE LESSON, what type of party and leaders you have to select for ruling.

costly lesson, never ever forget and pass it to all generations until end of the planet.

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News Network
June 15,2022

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Washington: The new I2U2 grouping of India, Israel, UAE and the US will hold its first virtual summit next month as part of the Biden administration's efforts to re-energise and revitalise American alliances across the world, according to the White House.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, US President Joe Biden, Israeli Prime Minister Neftali Bennett and UAE President Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan would attend the first-of-its-kind virtual summit of the I2U2 grouping next month for discussions of the food security crisis and other areas of cooperation, it said on Tuesday.

The virtual summit of the four countries would take place during Biden's trip to the Middle East region from July 13 to 16, a senior administration official told reporters during a conference call.

President Biden looks forward to this unique engagement with Prime Minister Bennett, Prime Minister Modi and President Mohammed bin Zayed, the official said.

State Department spokesperson Ned Price, during his daily news conference on Tuesday, told reporters that each of these countries are technological hubs.

"India is a massive consumer market. It is a massive producer of high-tech and highly sought-after goods as well. So, there are a number of areas where these countries can work together, whether its technology, trade, climate, COVID-19, and potentially even security as well," he said.

"Part of our approach from the start is not only to revitalise and re-energise our system of alliances and partnerships around the world, but also to stitch together partnerships that did not exist previously or were not utilised to their full extent," Mr Price said.

"Biotechnology is also prominent. Deepening trade and economic ties between these countries is in our interest when it comes to the relationship between Israel and the UAE. That is something we have sought to deepen. These two countries have deepened their relationship in recent years, including in the economic realm," he said.

Joe Biden will visit the Middle East region from July 13 to July 16 with stops in Israel, the West Bank and Saudi Arabia, and engagements with nearly a dozen counterparts from across the region and beyond.

"The first stop is Israel. This will be President Biden's first visit to the country as President, and it comes nearly 50 years after his first visit to Israel as a young senator," said the official.

During the trip, Joe Biden will engage with nearly a dozen of his counterparts in three stops - Israel, the West Bank, and Saudi Arabia.

It is part of this clear sequence of global engagements at an important moment, the official said.

"It demonstrates, we believe, the return of American leadership to bring countries together to address common threats and challenges, something the US can uniquely do.

"And with new frameworks that aim to harness unique American capabilities to enable partners to work more closely together, which is essential to a more secure, prosperous and stable Middle East region over the long term," the official said.

Biden's visit will also focus on Israel's increasing integration into the region, both through the Abraham Accords with the UAE, Morocco and Bahrain; through deepening ties between Israel, Jordan and Egypt; and also entirely new groupings of partners, including Israel, India, the UAE, and the United States - what they call I2U2, said the official.

"We consider these initiatives central to our strategy of empowering partners and encouraging them to work more closely together, which will lead to a more stable region and also to Israel's security and prosperity over the longer term."

"Importantly, some of these new partnerships reach beyond the Middle East, and the President will hold a virtual summit with the I2U2 heads of state for discussions of the food security crisis and other areas of cooperation across hemispheres where the UAE and Israel serve as important innovation hubs," the official added.

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News Network
June 25,2022

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Mumbai, June 25: Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, reduced to a minority within the Shiv Sena, the party founded by his father Balasaheb Thackeray, has called a national executive meeting today amid rebellion by his minister Eknath Shinde.

Latest updates

>> The meeting will be held in Shiv Sena Bhavan at 1 pm and Mr Thackeray, who has contracted Covid, will join virtually. On Friday, Mr Thackeray convened a meeting of the district chiefs in which he said that the rebel MLAs wanted to "break the party".

>> "The Sena is not finished" and that people siding with the BJP must be questioned, Mr Thackeray said. "Those who want to leave are free to go openly.... I will create a new Shiv Sena," he added.

>> In a virtual address to party corporators, Mr Thackeray also accused the BJP of trying to finish off the Sena. "Shiv Sena is an ideology... BJP wants to finish it off because they don't want to share the Hindu vote bank with anyone," he said, adding that late Bal Thackeray had initiated the alliance with the BJP only to avoid a split in Hindutva votes.

>> Priyanka Chaturvedi, part of Team Uddhav, hit back at Mr Shinde's claim that the party was diverging from its ideology of Hindutva. "Which Hindutva teaches you to stab your party, which is like a family, in the back?" she said, asserting that ideology is being used as an excuse for the "BJP-backed" rebellion.

>> Sixteen MLAs who have joined rebel leader Eknath Shinde are likely to be served notices by the Deputy Speaker today. The names of these rebel MLAs have already been sent to the Maharashtra Assembly deputy speaker for initiating action of disqualification against them.

>> "We have given notice against 16 MLAs that they should be sacked. Now they will have to answer why action should not be taken against them. Despite issuing a letter to them, none of them attended party meeting on Wednesday in Mumbai," Sena MP Arvind Sawant said.

>> Despite being reduced to a minority, Team Uddhav is confident that it has the powers to issue whip against the MLAs. The party also said that the claims by the Eknath Shinde camp that is "the real Shiv Sena" has no merit. "The Shiv Sena is a registered regional party and Uddhav Thackeray is our chief. We have a Consitution through which party president is selected," Advocate Dharam Mishra from Shiv Sena legal cell said.

>> Mr Shinde, at the centre of rebellion against Mr Thackeray, has said that he has the support of more than 50 MLAs. "Nearly 40 of them are from the Shiv Sena," he told the press in an interview.

>> Mr Shinde, who is camping with the rebels in BJP-ruled Assam, has accused the Sena leadership of being inaccessible to party leaders. On Friday, he put out a video by rebel leader Yamini Jadhav in which she accused the party leadership of not caring for her despite she "suffering from cancer" since October last year. He will chair a meeting with the MLAs today to decide the next strategy.

>> The rebels are camping at a five-star hotel on the outskirts of Assam's main city, Guwahati. A young MP, known to be close to Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, is the pointsman, sources said, adding at least three Assam BJP ministers are closely overseeing logistical matters at the Guwahati hotel.

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News Network
June 27,2022

New Delhi, June 27: India's daily Covid-19 cases jumped by 45 per cent on Monday as the nation logged 17,073 new coronavirus infections taking the total tally of Covid-19 cases to 4,34,07,046, while the active cases rose to 94,420, according to the Union Health Ministry data updated on Monday. On Sunday, the nation reported 11,739 cases. 

The death toll climbed to 5,25,020 with 21 new fatalities.

An increase of 1,844 cases has been recorded in the active Covid-19 caseload in a span of 24 hours.

The active cases comprise 0.22 per cent of the total infections. The national Covid-19 recovery rate was 98.57 per cent, the ministry said.

The daily positivity rate was recorded at 5.62 per cent while the weekly positivity rate was recorded at 3.39 per cent, it said.

The number of people who have recuperated from the disease surged to 4,27,87,606, while the case fatality rate was recorded at 1.21 per cent.

According to the ministry, 197.11 crore doses of vaccine have been administered in the country so far under the nationwide Covid-19 inoculation drive.
 

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