Guards wearing face shields stand beside a metro train in New Delhi, India, on September 6, 2020.
  • India recorded 90,000 new coronavirus infections on Sunday, overtaking Brazil to become the second-worst infected nation in the pandemic.
  • As of Monday morning local time, India has recorded 4.2 million cases and 71,000 deaths from the coronavirus, according to the Ministry of Health. 
  • Only the US has more cases, but India has a far lower fatality rate, at 1.7% to the US's 3%.
  • The government is attributing the rise in cases to "behavior fatigue," or people's getting tired of following safety measures and wearing masks.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

India recorded 90,000 new coronavirus infections on Sunday, overtaking Brazil to become the second-worst infected nation in the pandemic so far.

As of Monday, India has recorded 4.2 million cases of the coronavirus in India, with 71,000 total deaths, according to a tracker from the Ministry of Health. 

Only the US is worse hit, with 6.2 million cases and 188,000 deaths as of Sunday night, according to researchers at Johns Hopkins University.

Brazil, now in third place, has recorded 4.1 million cases and 126,686 deaths as of Sunday night.

India made the leap from recording 3 million to 4 million cases in just 13 days — half the time it took Brazil to achieve the same feat, which it did on Thursday.

Since August 31, India has recorded at least 75,000 new cases per day. On Sunday, the country reported 90,802 new cases along with 1,016 new deaths.

'Behavior fatigue'

The government is attributing the rise in cases to "behavior fatigue," Randeep Guleria, a senior adviser to the government during the pandemic and director of the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, said Saturday, according to the country's Business Today magazine.

"People are getting tired of wearing masks and tired of taking safety measures," he said.

While the rise in cases is alarming, India still has a low fatality rate, with 1.7% of those who contract the virus dying with it. In comparison, Spain has a rate of 5.9% and the US, 3%.

However, experts observing India's response to the pandemic have criticized the government for not testing enough people and for not correctly identifying virus-related deaths, and say the death rate is likely higher.

Reopening plans resume

Some public services are also going ahead with reopening despite the rise in cases. Metro lines in the densely populated cities of New Delhi and Lucknow reopened on Monday for the first time in months.

Another pressing concern for the Indian government is that the economy has been ravaged by the impact of the pandemic.

The economy contracted more than any G20 country in June, according to the International Monetary Fund, with the economy shrinking 24% in Q2.

India overtook Russia as the country with the third-most coronavirus infections on July 5.

Receive a daily update on your cellphone with all our latest news: click here.

Get the best of our site emailed to you daily: click here.

Also from Business Insider South Africa:

  • How an IT consultant from Springs became America’s 'Chief Biltong Officer'
  • Exxon ditches its South African exploration projects
  • Meet Netflix billionaire Reed Hastings, who once was a teacher in Swaziland
  • Per-minute electric kick scooter rentals are coming to Cape Town – here’s what we know
  • Camping is a pretty safe getaway during the pandemic. Here are some of SA's best campsites