US restricts journey from India efficient Could 4th amid huge surge in Covid

Individuals wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) wear the body of a person who died of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) during a mass cremation at a crematorium in New Delhi, India on April 26, 2021.

Adnan Abidi | Reuters

Biden’s government will restrict travel from India as that country grapples with a gigantic increase in coronavirus cases, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said on Friday.

The policy will go into effect on Tuesday May 4th, Psaki said in a statement. The administration made the decision based on recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Psaki said.

While Covid infections and deaths in the US are declining as millions of Americans are vaccinated every day, India is in some cases on an unprecedented surge.

India reported a record daily death toll from Covid on Wednesday. The country has an average of 3,050 Covid deaths per day, according to data from Johns Hopkins University, although media reports suggest the official number is underestimated.

India has reported an average of 357,500 new cases per day for the past seven days – an increase of around 26% from a week, data from Johns Hopkins shows.

The country is battling a highly contagious variant of Covid known as B.1.617, which was first discovered in India. Some believe that the variant, which contains two key mutations found separately in other coronavirus variants, is behind the recent wave of infections.

The variant has since been identified in other countries, including the United States.

Jeff Zients, the Covid Response Coordinator, said the US is “continuously monitoring” the situation. He added that America was “in very close contact with our foreign counterparts” and “will continue to follow the CDC’s science-based guidelines on travel and other matters.”

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