The Daily Beast
India’s Super Rich Escapes World’s Worst COVID with Private Jet
According to the London Times, eight private jets carrying Indian ultra-rich people and potentially coronaviruses landed in London prior to the UK’s ban on travel from India at 4 am. The United Kingdom has added India to the “Red List” of countries that have been hit by a pandemic. As of Friday, British returning from India must be quarantined in a government-approved hotel for 10 days. If you have stayed in India for the last 10 days, all non-British or Irish citizens will be completely banned from entering the country. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson had to cancel his official visit to India next week as a “precautionary measure”. The last luxury airliner to arrive, the VistaJet Bombardier Global 6000, left Dubai on Thursday to attract passengers in Mumbai. Just 44 minutes before the restrictions took place, at 3:15 am, private jet passengers fled home from unimaginable horror. At least 14 COVID-19 patients were killed in a catastrophic fire that struck the ICU ward in one of India’s overcrowded hospitals, about 70 miles from Mumbai. The fire that broke out around 3 am on Friday was contained and extinguished, but not before the deaths of 14 patients who were intubated and difficult to evacuate. “Approximately 90 patients were admitted to the hospital at the time of the incident,” Dilip Shah, director of Vijay Barab Hospital, said in a statement on Friday. Avinash Patil, a witness to a black market hospital bed and a reduced COVID drug sold on Twitter in India, told reporters outside the hospital that there were no doctors at the time. “My mother-in-law got a call from a friend who was admitted to the hospital around 3 am,” he said. “When I arrived at the hospital, I saw a fire engine outside. The ICU on the second floor was covered in smoke. There were only two nurses there, so I couldn’t see a doctor. It took about 30 minutes for the firefighters to put out the flames. According to local media reports, hospital director Shah claimed that all safety standards were being followed and that “there was a doctor.” Earlier in the week, an oxygen leak in Maharashtra near the location of the fire killed 24 COVID-19 patients on mechanical ventilation. To make matters worse, India reported the highest number in a day. Cases recorded 332,730 new infections in 24 hours. At the same time, 2,263 people died of COVID-19. India is overwhelmed by new cases, coupled with a serious shortage of oxygen, beds, and current ventilators. Many desperate families are forced to rely on black market-priced gougers who were able to purchase hospital space from corrupt managers. India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been criticized for not calling for a national blockade to mitigate proliferation and for hosting a rally prior to the May elections. Government officials said the previous blockade at the start of the pandemic had a devastating financial impact on many manual workers. The fire at COVID-19 Hospital in Villar is tragic. Condolences to those who lost their loved ones. The injured may recover quickly. PM @ narendramodi— PMO India (@PMOIndia) April 23, 2021 Modi called the ICU fire “tragic” and condolences on Twitter. Many of the comments on his tweet begged him to call for a national blockade to save lives. In a shocking exposure published in Time magazine, Indian journalist Lana Iyube painted a horrifying picture from the ground, the state essentially hijacked an oxygen truck, stole supplies from his hospital, and died from underreporting. I’m writing about interfering with the allegations. Ayub blamed Modi’s shoulders for a head-on blunder, ignoring the fact that his Trump-style rally was a superspreading event, and accused the vaccine of dropping the ball. Cross section of Indian society? Ayyub writes. “The responsibility lies with the Strongman regime, which ignores all attention.” Read more at The Daily Beast. Put your top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now! DailyBeast Membership: Beast Inside digs deeper into the stories that matter to you. learn more.