India's Covid-19 tally rises above 31.3 million as country grapples with floods and landslides


Women wait in a queue to register for a dose of the Covishield vaccine at a primary health centre in Siliguri on July 24, 202. - AFP

NEW DELHI, July 25 (Xinhua/Reuters): India's Covid-19 tally rose to 31,371,901 on Sunday as 39,742 new cases were registered during the past 24 hours across the country, showed the federal health ministry's latest data.

Besides, as many as 535 deaths due to the pandemic since Saturday morning took the total death toll to 420,551.

There are still 408,212 active Covid-19 cases in the country as there was a fall of 765 cases during the past 24 hours.

A total of 30,543,138 people have been successfully cured and discharged from hospitals so far, out of which 39,972 were discharged during the past 24 hours.

Meanwhile, rescue teams in India struggled through thick sludge and debris on Saturday to reach dozens of submerged homes as the death toll from landslides and accidents caused by torrential monsoon rain rose to 125.

Maharashtra state is being hit by the heaviest rain in July in four decades, experts say. Downpours lasting several days have severely affected the lives of hundreds of thousands, while major rivers are in danger of bursting their banks.

In Taliye, about 180 km (110 miles) southeast of the financial capital of Mumbai, the death toll rose to 42 with the recovery of four more bodies after landslides flattened most homes in the village, a senior Maharashtra government official said.

"About 40 people are still trapped. The possibility of rescuing them alive is thin as they've been trapped in mud for more than 36 hours," said the official, who declined to be identified as he is not authorised to talk to the media.

Harsh weather has hit several parts of the world in recent weeks, with floods in China and Western Europe and heat waves in North America, raising new fears about the impact of climate change.

Parts of India's west coast have received up to 594 mm (23 inches) of rain, forcing authorities to move people out of vulnerable areas as they released water from dams about to overflow. The hill station of Mahabaleshwar recorded its highest ever rainfall - 60 cm in 24 hours.
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