India Reports 3,998 COVID Deaths After State Corrects Data

MUMBAI, July 21 (Reuters) – India on Wednesday reported its highest death toll in a month – at nearly 4,000 – after its wealthiest state reconciled its death toll with 3,109 previously unreported deaths, a announced the Ministry of Health.

Maharashtra, home to the financial capital of Mumbai, has reported 130,753 of the 418,480 coronavirus deaths in the country, and added 3,509 previous deaths to its tally, the federal health ministry said on Wednesday.

The ministry did not give a reason, but authorities have in the past attributed other unreported death cases to administrative errors, before the errors were discovered and the numbers appeared in official data.

Last month, the poor northern state of Bihar increased the death toll by more than 5,000 in one day by including unrecorded data.

The sudden appearance of previously unreported deaths has heightened suspicions that the total number of deaths in India is significantly higher than the official figure. Read more .

India’s infection tally stands at 31.22 million, with a death toll of 418,480, according to official data.

But the Washington-based Center for Global Development estimated in a report Tuesday that India’s actual death toll from COVID-19 could reach 4.9 million. Read more .

The government reported 42,015 new coronavirus infections in the past 24 hours on Wednesday, according to data from the Department of Health.

Reporting by Shilpa Jamkhandikar in Mumbai and Nallur Sethuraman in Bengaluru; Editing by Clarence Fernandez, Robert Birsel

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