India

Australian businessman trapped in India dies from Covid

Govind Kant, a Sydney businessman, died on Sunday, his company said.

He had travelled to Delhi in April for family reasons.

Mr Kant is believed to be the second Australian to have died in India amid a temporary travel ban imposed after a devastating second wave. Australian officials are yet to comment.

The three-week ban on Indian arrivals ended on Saturday, but more than 9,000 Australians remain stuck in the country.

Australian cricketers caught by India ban fly home

The players and staff had been involved in the Indian Premier League which was suspended this month.

They flew to the Maldives after Australia banned all arrivals from India following a surge in Covid cases.

While the controversial ban was lifted on 15 May, thousands of Australians remain stranded in India.

The cricketers - among them former Australian captain Steve Smith, David Warner and Pat Cummins - will now complete 14 days' quarantine in Sydney.

India's Gujarat state braces for most severe cyclone in over two decades

Cyclone Tauktae has killed at least 12 people and left a trail of destruction as it brushed past the coastal states of Kerala, Karnataka, Goa and Maharashtra, authorities said.

It is set to make landfall in Gujarat late on Monday.

"This will be the most severe cyclone to hit Gujarat in at least 20 years. This can be compared with the 1998 cyclone that hit Kandla and inflicted heavy damage," state revenue secretary Pankaj Kumar told Reuters.

The cyclone increases pressure on local administrations already struggling with a high caseload of Covid-19 infections.

First Australian repatriation flight from India lands in Darwin

The government said 80 people arrived in Darwin on Saturday, and would be quarantined for a fortnight.

Their Qantas flight was originally scheduled to carry 150 people onboard.

But 70 passengers were later barred from travel after testing positive for coronavirus or coming into close contact with others who were.

Australia's strict rules on pre-flight testing meant there was not enough time for the seats to be given to others waiting to return.

Covid-19 deaths in India cross quarter-million mark

Deaths from Covid-19 swelled by 4205, while daily coronavirus cases rose by 348,421, with India's overall number of cases surging past 23 million, according to health ministry data.

Even then, experts believe the official numbers grossly underestimate the real scale of the epidemic's impact, and actual deaths and infections could be five to ten times higher.

India's Covid-19 infection curve may be showing early signs of flattening, but the decline in the number of new infections is likely to be slow, top Indian virologist Shahid Jameel said.

India's doctors warn against using cow dung to ward off coronavirus

The Indian government has told medics to look out for signs of mucormycosis in coronavirus patients following an increase in cases of the rare but potentially fatal infection.

The disease can lead to blackening or discolouration over the nose, blurred or double vision, chest pain, breathing difficulties and coughing blood.

It is strongly linked to diabetes, which can in turn be exacerbated by steroids, such as dexamethasone, used to treat severe COVID-19.

Dozens of bodies wash up on banks of Ganges river

The discovery, near the border between the states of Bihar and Uttar Pradesh, was confirmed to the BBC on Monday.

It is not clear how the bodies came to be there, but local media reports suggest they may be Covid-19 victims.

Some media reports say as many as 100 bodies have been found, and that their condition suggests they may have been in the river for several days.

"There is a possibility that these bodies have come out of Uttar Pradesh," a local official, Ashok Kumar, told the BBC after questioning local residents.

Australia to resume repatriation flights from India

The government's controversial ban, which made it an offence for people to try and re-enter Australia after being in India within the prior 14 days, began on Monday and was due to finish on 15 May.

Morrison said the National Security Committee met yesterday and agreed it saw "no need to extend it beyond that date".

"The original decision to put in place that biosecurity order until the 15th of May has proved very effective and it will run its full course until that time without any change," he said.

India Covid: Calls grow for national lockdown

The prime minister is resisting the move due to the economic impact.

India added more than 355,000 cases on Tuesday, down from more than 400,000 daily infections on 30 April.

The government says cases are "slowing down", but testing numbers have also dipped, meaning the true caseload could be far higher.

Confirmed infection numbers have however been consistently falling in Maharashtra state, which has driven the second wave since early April.

Delhi calls for army help amid crisis

Hospitals in the city are in crisis, with intensive care beds full and an acute shortage of medical oxygen.

Delhi's government wants the army to run Covid care facilities and intensive care units.

Across India, case numbers since the start of the outbreak are closing in on 20 million.

The country has seen more than 300,000 new cases a day for nearly two weeks straight while deaths stand at 220,000.

Experts say total Covid cases and deaths in India are likely to be much higher, citing lack of testing and patients dying at home without being seen by doctors.