The United States on Wednesday advised its citizens to leave India as soon as possible because of the country’s worsening coronavirus crisis.
The Department of State has issued a Level 4 Travel Advisory, the highest, asking citizens “not to travel to India or to leave as soon as it is safe to do so”. There are direct daily flights between India and the US, along with additional services that are available for citizens that connect via Europe, the department said.
“Access to medical care is severely limited due to Covid-19 cases,” the State Department tweeted.
The US Embassy in New Delhi also flagged that hospitals are running out oxygen and other crucial supplies to treat patients. “US citizens are reporting being denied admittance to hospitals in some cities due to a lack of space,” it added. “Some states have enacted curfews and other restrictions that limit movement and the operation of non-essential businesses.”
On April 19, the US had advised its citizens to avoid travelling to India even if they are fully vaccinated against the coronavirus.
The second wave has led to at least lakhs of people testing positive in India for the infection in the past week, overwhelming hospitals and crematoriums. Many countries have offered to help India as social media is awash with frantic pleas for help, with people desperately seeking help to find oxygen cylinders, crucial medicines and beds in hospitals.
In the past 24 hours, India recorded 3,79,257 new coronavirus cases, the largest single-day total in the world, taking the country’s total since the pandemic broke out in January 2020 to 1,83,76,524.. A further 3,645, the highest so far, took the toll to 2,04,832.
Earlier this week, Australia banned all flights from India amid the escalating Covid-19 surge. The United Kingdom barred any visitor who’s been in India in the previous 10 days from entering. British or Irish citizens will have to pay to stay in a UK government-approved quarantine. New Zealand also restricted travellers from India due to a spike in the infections.