Cases of the coronavirus have skyrocketed in India, with hospitals begging for more supplies, the most important one being oxygen, to help patients struggling to breathe, the Associated Press reports.
The ruling party, in a statement, said the crisis follows a continuous trend where daily oxygen delivered was way short of the quota assigned to Delhi.
New cases fell to 11,000 by mid-February, vaccines were being exported, and in March the health minister said India was "in the endgame" of the pandemic.
He said some 2,000 people were dying daily, but most experts estimated that the true number was five to 10 times that level.
He said an oxygen tanker had just entered the hospital complex and he hoped it would temporarily relieve the depleted supplies.More news: Deaths and desperation in India’s capital as COVID cases rise
The pandemic has killed more than three million people worldwide since the initial outbreak in China in December 2019.
Sources said "low pressure oxygen" was the likely cause of the deaths in Ganga Ram, one of the city's biggest and most high-profile hospitals, where healthcare staff were reduced to manually ventilating patients in the intensive-care unit and emergency department.
India's Supreme Court told Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government on Thursday it wanted a "national plan" for the supply of oxygen and essential drugs for the treatment of coronavirus patients.
Television showed families tending to the sick in hospital corridors and streets as they waited for medical attention.
"You can't leave me in the lurch", a lawyer appearing for the Jaipur Golden hospital told the high court on Saturday, seeking its intervention.More news: Morrison government quashes Victoria's belt and road deal with China
India surpassed the USA record of 297,430 single-day infections anywhere in the world on Thursday, making it the global epicentre of a pandemic that is waning in many other countries.
Jitender Singh Shunty, who runs a non-profit medical service in India's capitol, said that 78 bodies were cremated in a single day at one location on Tuesday He said previous year, the maximum number of bodies he helped cremate in one day was 18.
Britain began to gradually lift Covid-19 restrictions last month after months of curbs and a successful mass vaccination campaign.
The Press Trust of India news agency said the Defence Ministry would fly 23 mobile oxygen generating plants from Germany to help with the shortage. It has opened up the immunisation programme to all adults but faces a shortage. It has also approved Russia's Sputnik V and has urged Pfizer Moderna and Johnson and Johnson to provide it with vaccines.More news: USA ex-cop Derek Chauvin convicted of George Floyd’s murder