India's vaccine drive crumbles as daily virus cases near 400,000
India suffers vaccine shortages - Citizens wait in queues to receive their Coronavirus vaccination at the NESCO Jumbo Vaccination centre in Mumbai. India suffers vaccine shortages as virus surges. - Subhash Sharma/ZUMA Wire/dpa
India suffers vaccine shortages - Citizens wait in queues to receive their Coronavirus vaccination at the NESCO Jumbo Vaccination centre in Mumbai. India suffers vaccine shortages as virus surges. - Subhash Sharma/ZUMA Wire/dpa

India registered 386,452 new coronavirus cases on Friday, yet another global record for infections in a single day, even as the country's new round of vaccinations appeared uncertain, with many states citing lack of doses.

Covid-19 claimed 3,498 lives in the past 24 hours, taking the death toll to 208,330, data from the federal Health Ministry showed.

India's vaccination drive is set to open to everyone older than 18 years from Saturday, but many states said they had run out of doses.

Worst-hit major states like Maharashtra, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh and national capital New Delhi said they had not been assured of adequate supplies and would not be able to start the vaccinations on Saturday.

India's financial hub of Mumbai closed vaccinations for three days from Friday citing insufficient stocks.

Only 2.2 million people were vaccinated on Thursday, the lowest daily figure for vaccinations in the past 10 days, broadcaster NDTV reported, indicating how the vaccine drive was floundering.

So far only 10 per cent of the people - 45 years and above eligible under the drive that began in January – have received at least one vaccine dose.

India with a total caseload 18.7 million cases, is seeing a devastating second wave of Covid-19 that has overwhelmed hospitals and caused shortages of medical supplies.

Several countries including Britain and Germany are sending medical aid. India received the first emergency consignment from the United States early Friday, part of 100 million dollars worth of supplies including oxygen cylinders, masks and diagnostic kits.