As Covid-19 rolls back, India’s bars full and masks are optional

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Just over two months ago, around 4,000 people died from Covid-19 every day in India. Yet on a recent Friday, a rooftop bar in New Delhi was again filled with crowds of young adults mingling without masks.

Among the hundreds in attendance at Summer House Cafe, a popular nightclub in the Indian capital, was Srishtii Guptaa, a 29-year-old graduate student who said she lost several family members to Covid-19 in April. and May.

“Life goes on,” said Ms Guptaa, who resumed her busy social life as soon as the lockdown restrictions were lifted. “Nothing prevents me from partying.

For some Indians, life has already returned to normal after a devastating spring wave. In New Delhi and other cities across the country, shoppers are once again swarming stores, diners throng to restaurants, and bars welcome crowds of revelers. Many have already given up on safety precautions such as social distancing and wearing a mask.

Coronavirus infections have steadily declined – despite a slow vaccination rollout – after peaking at more than 400,000 cases per day in early May. For weeks, daily confirmed cases have peaked at around 40,000. Only about 7% of the country’s more than 1.3 billion people have received the two Covid-19 vaccines.


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