The US President Donald Trump during the first presidential debate against his Democratic opponent Joe Biden on Tuesday evening, said that India does not give a "straight count" on the COVID-19 figures.
Trump was responding to heated criticism from his Democratic rival Joe Biden, who blamed Trump for the heavy Covid-19 toll in the United States which has recorded more than 200,000 deaths and more than seven million infections.
But, Trump defended the United States’ performance in managing the coronavirus pandemic. He compared the number of deaths in US to figures put out by China, Russia, and India.
Trump said: "When you talk about numbers you know how many people died in China? You know how many people died in Russia? You don't know how many people died in India. They don't give you a straight count."
Interestingly, the US is currently the worst-affected country in the world with the maximum number of Covid-19 cases, while India stands at number two, according to the Johns Hopkins University.
With a spike of 80,472 coronavirus cases and 1,179 deaths in 24 hours, India's tally on Wednesday mounted to the grim 62 lakh-mark with a total of 62,25,763 cases.
Out of the total cases, 9,40,441 are currently active, 51,87,825 have been discharged, while 97,497 lost the battle against the viral disease. While the recovery rate stands at a high of 83.33 per cent, the fatality rate has come down to 1.57 per cent, the data from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare said.
The new fatalities include 430 from Maharashtra, 136 from Karnataka, 75 from Punjab, 70 from Tamil Nadu, 63 from Uttar Pradesh, 62 from West Bengal, 48 from Delhi, 39 each from Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh and 35 from Andhra Pradesh.
Total 97,497 deaths reported so far in the country includes 36,181 from Maharashtra followed by 9,453 from Tamil Nadu, 8,777 from Karnataka, 5,780 from Andhra Pradesh, 5,715 from Uttar Pradesh, 5,320 from Delhi, 4,899 from West Bengal, 3,439 from Gujarat, 3,359 from Punjab and 2,281 from Madhya Pradesh.
Meanwhile, according to the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), 7,41,96,729 samples have been tested up to September 29 for COVID-19. Out of these 10,86,688 samples were tested yesterday.
The health ministry stressed that more than 70 per cent of the deaths occurred due to comorbidities. "Our figures are being reconciled with the Indian Council of Medical Research," the ministry said on its website, adding that state-wise distribution of figures is subject to further verification and reconciliation.
(Inputs from Agencies)