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Coronavirus updates | Record 3.49 lakh new COVID cases and 2,767 deaths

The Centre on Sunday directed all manufacturers to provide liquid oxygen only for medical purposes and said 551 oxygen generation plants will be set up, as India saw a record 3,49,691 new coronavirus infections and 2,767 fatalities amid a crippling shortage of medical amenities in the high-caseload states including Delhi where the lockdown was extended till May 3.

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Just in: Four patients died when fire broke out late night in a COVID-19 hospital in Surat

Relatives brave long queues to refill oxygen in Lucknow

It was after standing in a queue for almost eight hours through the day that Prashant Trivedi, an associate professor of Sociology, managed to refill an oxygen cylinder at a gas agency in Bakshi ka Talab on the outskirts of the Uttar Pradesh capital. Mr. Trivedi was appalled by the big crowd gathered at the refilling station with little regard for physical distancing. He fears that refilling stations, where kin of patients are turning up in large numbers and standing in queues for several hours, could serve as hotspots in further spreading COVID-19.

“These are people who have family members who are positive, admitted in hospitals or in isolation. I myself wondered if I was taking a risk by going there to get a cylinder refilled for my mother,” said Mr. Trivedi.

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