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People filing the oxygen cylinders for housed patients at Shaheen Bagh in New Delhi, India, on Tuesday. Photo: Sonu Mehta/Hindustan Times via Getty Images

India's health ministry confirmed 314,835 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday, taking the total tally to nearly 16 million infections.

Why it matters: It's the highest number of coronavirus cases reported in a single day anywhere in the world, eclipsing the previous record of 307,581 cases set in the U.S. on Jan. 8, AP notes.

  • The health ministry said another 2,104 people lost their lives to the virus, taking the pandemic death toll to 184,657 in the world's second-most populous country.

Driving the news: West Bengal reported Thursday that a record 9,819 people had tested positive for the virus, as voters went to the polls in state elections, the Indian Express reports.

  • On Monday night-time, India's capital, New Delhi, entered a weeklong lockdown, as hospitals became overwhelmed, supplies like oxygen scarce and morgues overfull.
  • In the city of Nashik, in the state of Maharashtra, 24 coronavirus patients died at a hospital Wednesday after "oxygen supply was disrupted" following "leakage in the main oxygen storage tank," per the Indian Express.
  • The government of Maharashtra announced fresh pandemic restrictions from 8p.m. Thursday local time through May 1, while authorities on the island of Goa announced a night curfew that will remain in place until April 30.

For the record: More COVID-19 cases have been recorded globally each day this week than ever before in the pandemic, surpassing the previous global peak in early January.

Of note: Earlier this month, India became the second country after the U.S. to surpass 100,000 new coronavirus cases in one day. Case numbers have continued to surge since then.

  • The country had until this month been exporting most of the coronavirus vaccine doses it was producing for the global COVAX initiative and to countries like Saudi Arabia and the U.K.
  • But as cases began soaring in India, officials began scrambling to vaccinate as many people as possible — sharply curtailing exports, Lawler notes.

Editor's note: This article has been updated with new details throughout.

Go deeper

Updated 8 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Omicron dashboard

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

  1. Health: Concerns grow over CDC's isolation guidelines — Experts warn of more COVID-19 variants after Omicron — WHO recommends 2 new treatments — What "mild" really means when it comes to Omicron.
  2. Vaccines: America's vaccination drive runs out of gas— Puerto Rico expands booster shot requirements— Supreme Court blocks Biden's vaccine mandate for large employers.
  3. Politics: Vivek Murthy calls SCOTUS vaccine mandate block "a setback for public health" — Focus group says Biden weak on COVID response, strong on democracy.
  4. Economy: America's labor shortage is bigger than the pandemic— — CDC COVID guidance for cruise ships to be optional starting Saturday — The cost of testing.
  5. States: America struggles to keep schools open — Youngkin ends mandates for masks in schools and COVID vaccinations for state workers.
  6. World: Beijing reports first local Omicron case weeks before Winter Olympics — Teachers in France stage mass walkout over COVID protocols.
  7. Variant tracker
Jul 30, 2021 - World

Japan expands COVID-19 emergency amid case spike

People wearing face masks cross Shibuya crossing on July 30, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. Photo: Yuichi Yamazaki/Getty Images

Japan expanded its coronavirus state of emergency to four more areas in addition to Tokyo on Friday amid record spikes in infections, AP reports.

The big picture: The state of emergency now includes Saitama, Kanagawa and Chiba, near Tokyo, as well as in the western city of Osaka, effective Monday until Aug. 31.

Updated Jul 30, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Military members will be included in Biden's new COVID guidance

Joe Biden. Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

Members of the military will be required to get vaccinations or face regular testing, social distancing, mask mandates and restrictions on travel for work, the the Pentagon said on Thursday evening.

Why it matters: The policy was announced for federal workers and onsite contractors earlier on Thursday, part of several new Biden initiatives to get more Americans vaccinated and slow the spread of the Delta variant.