India’s death toll due to Covid has now passed the 200,000 mark and it has seen more cases in the past seven days than any other country in the world. People have died waiting for beds, oxygen supplies are running low and hospitals are under immense strain from new patients.
India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi has seen a barrage of criticism in recent days.
An opinion piece in today’s Telegraph newspaper did not mince its words, saying “Narendra Modi needs to go.”
It isn’t alone in its sentiment – an opposition politician has accused him and his government of ignoring scientific warnings to participate in election rallies and allow a massive Hindu festival in northern India.
Dr Navjot Dahiya, the vice president of the Indian Medical Association, called him a “super spreader” who had “tossed all Covid norms in the air.”
#ResignModi was even trending on Twitter earlier this week.
State governments, from Delhi to Karnataka, have also been criticised for allowing Covid protocols to lapse and failing to prepare for what epidemiologists say was an inevitable surge.
But the focus is on Mr Modi, who centralised much of the Covid response, and boasted of his government beating the pandemic – until the second wave arrived.