Virus, heat wave and locusts form perfect storm in India

NEW DELHI (AP) — India is facing a triple disaster that drew biblical comparisons with scorching temperatures, locust swarms and a coronavirus toll growing by thousands of new infections each day. Officials are trying to balance the competing demands of simultaneous public health crises: protecting people from eviscerating heat but also contagion in newly reopened parks and markets. The heat wave threatens to compound the challenges of containing the virus, which is spreading more quickly and broadly since the government began easing restrictions of one of the world’s most stringent lockdowns earlier this month. At the same time, swarms of desert locusts have devastated crops in India’s heartland, threatening an already vulnerable region that is struggling with the economic cost of the lockdown.