Woman claiming to be the oldest person in the world at 124 given jab

Grandmother claiming to be the oldest person in the world at 124 receives her first coronavirus jab in India

  • Rehtee Begum from Jammu and Kashmir was among 9,000 people vaccinated
  • Her rations card had her down as being 124 years old, according to local reports
  • If correct, this would make her the oldest person ever recorded in the world
  • Currently, the official oldest person alive is a 118-year-old man living in Japan 

A grandmother claiming to be the oldest person in the world at 124 has received her first coronavirus jab in India. 

Rehtee Begum from the Baramulla district of Jammu and Kashmir was among 9,000 people in the district who was given the Covid-19 vaccine on Wednesday.

She received the vaccine as doses were given out door-to-door, and her ration card reportedly revealed her age to be 124, although no further proof was given.

Rehtee Begum from the Baramulla district of Jammu and Kashmir was among 9,000 people in the district who was given the Covid-19 vaccine on Wednesday (pictured)

According to local reports, the news emerged when youngsters – initially too afraid to get the jab themselves – were inspired to do so by her coming forward and offering to get the first dose.

Health workers explained that they were giving out coronavirus vaccines, with Ms Begum expressing her consent to be given the jab, local reports said.

‘Rehtee was administered the Covishield vaccine. It took place during a mobile inoculation drive held in Baramulla district’s Srakwara area,’ a local health worker explained.

Later, the Department of Information and Public Relations of Jammu and Kashmir also confirmed the jab had been given to the elderly woman.

In a video recorded after she was given the vaccine dose, the woman said she was feeling fine and doing well after being inoculated.

The Deputy Commissioner of Baramulla Bhupinder Kumar also said that an elderly woman from the district was vaccinated on Wednesday.

Pictured: An Indian woman receives a shot of COVID-19 vaccine during the vaccination drive for the students and residents who want to travel abroad, in Bangalore, India, 03 June 2021

Meanwhile, Block Development Officer for Wagoora, Abdul Rashid Ganie, said he was part of the group to visit the family which housed a grandma.

‘The ration card revealed her age as 124,’ Ganie said, adding that when she was asked about her age, all she said was that she had crossed 100.

‘We saw the ration card of the family which listed her as 124 years old. Well, she surely seems to be 100-plus, but, I cannot certify her real age,’ he added. 

If the ration card is to be believed then Rehtee is not only the world’s oldest surviving person to receive a Covid vaccine, but the world’s oldest person ever recorded.

The official oldest person to be recorded was Jeanne Calment, a woman from France who died at the age of 122 years and 164 days. 

Currently, the oldest known person still alive is Kane Tanaka, a man in Japan aged 118 years and 152 days (as on June 3). 

Rehtee said she is also enthusiastic to take the second jab in seven week’s time.

She also said she thought that the health facility has done remarkably well in its coronavirus vaccine programme. 

The news of Rehtee’s vaccination offers some light in a particularly challenging time in India as it continues to fight a serious third wave of coronavirus.

Pictured: Students wear mask and stand in a queue as they maintain social distance, before receiving a shot of COVID-19 vaccine during the vaccination drive for the students and residents who want to travel abroad, in Bangalore, India, 03 June 2021

For the past month, India has been struggling with the deadly virus, and although the number of cases are starting to decline, the country has been facing a high daily death toll.  

The tally of new daily infections stood at 127, 510 on Monday, its lowest daily rise in little over a month. This number increased slightly on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Meanwhile, the number of new Covid-deaths reported on Wednesday stood at 2,887 – lower than the peak of over 4,000 per day seen last week.  

In total, India has seen over 28.4 million reported cases and almost 338,000 deaths – although experts believe both figures to be much higher than that reported by health officials.

It comes as the country’s capital of New Delhi has been gradually ending its weeks-long lockdown from Monday, when factories were allowed to operate again and construction work could resume. 

The city recorded peaks of 25,000 cases in April, but is now reporting less than 1,500 cases per day. 

Despite the easing of certain restrictions, experts have warned that people in the country should continue to follow safety protocols, reaffirming that the pandemic is not over in India just yet.     

Medical researcher Bhramar Mukherjee told the BBC: ‘The notion that the peak has passed may give false sense of security to everyone when their states are in fact entering the crisis mode.

‘We must make it clear that no state is safe yet.’

The country has been left reeling after a deadly second wave of the virus hit in March. 

Health workers are set up around the country to record the temperature of citizens 

A health worker takes a swab sample from a man for a Reverse Transcription Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) test along a road in New Delhi

Indian covid sufferers are now contracting deadly ‘black fungus’ infection with spike causing a shortage of the drugs to treat it 

A growing number of current and recovered Covid-19 patients in India are contracting a deadly and rare fungal infection, doctors said on last week.  

Mucormycosis, dubbed ‘black fungus’ by medics, is usually most aggressive in patients whose immune systems are weakened by other infections. 

‘The cases of mucormycosis infection in Covid-19 patients post-recovery is nearly four to five times than those reported before the pandemic,’ Ahmedabad-based infectious diseases specialist Atul Patel, a member of the state’s Covid-19 taskforce, told AFP.   

In the western state of Maharashtra, home to India’s financial hub Mumbai, up to 300 cases have been detected, said Khusrav Bajan, a consultant at Mumbai’s P.D. Hinduja National Hospital and a member of the state’s Covid-19 taskforce.

Some 300 cases have been reported so far in four cities in Gujarat, including its largest Ahmedabad, according to data from state-run hospitals.

The western state ordered government hospitals to set up separate treatment wards for patients infected with ‘black fungus’ amid the rise in cases.

‘Mucormycosis – if uncared for – may turn fatal,’ the Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR), the scientific agency leading the government’s response, said in a treatment chart released on Twitter.o used steroids during their virus treatment, and those who had prolonged stays in hospital ICUs, the ICMR added.     

Reporting by AFP 

Hospitals, morgues and crematoriums have been overwhelmed ever since, with many areas of the country suffering chronic oxygen shortages. 

In recent weeks, a horrifying Covid-19 complication has also swept the country, with thousands of people contracting black fungus. 

The wave of infections with the previously very rare condition has been blamed on excessive use of steroids to treat the country’s millions of Covid patients, experts say. 

Mucormycosis, as it is scientifically known, is highly aggressive and surgeons sometimes have to remove patients’ eyes, nose and jaw to stop it reaching the brain. The death rate is over 50 percent. 

India normally deals with fewer than 20 black fungus cases a year but now there are several thousand across the country including more than 2,000 in Maharashtra state, home to India’s financial capital Mumbai. 

At least nine Indian states have declared the problem an epidemic. The cities of New Delhi, Mumbai, Ahmedabad and Bangalore have opened special wards. 

Before the coronavirus pandemic, only those with severely compromised immunity, such as HIV or organ transplant patients, were at risk. 

Earlier this week, analysis by the New York Times was published, which suggested that the death toll in the country could be as many as 1.6 million compared to the official 310,000 fatalities reported.  

The paper’s ‘more likely’ scenario estimates the number of deaths to be 1.6 million, while the worst-case could be as high as 4.2 million.

By comparison, Britain recorded just nine deaths on May 27 and more than 127,000 fatalities in total. The US has recorded about 590,000, also suspected to be an undercount, in a population of about 330 million. 

Official figures in India put the toll at 310,000 in a population of 1.4 billion.

In consulting with more than a dozen experts, the Times said it found it difficult to get a clear picture even of the total number of infections in India due to poor record-keeping and a lack of widespread testing. 

Vinod Paul, head of India’s coronavirus task force, dismissed the study and said it was ‘not backed by any evidence and is based on distorted estimates.

‘Our [fatality] number is 0.05 per cent of those infected. They’ve said 0.3 per cent. Why? On what basis have you decided that it’s 0.3 per cent of that large infection universe? There is no basis at all. Five people get together, make phone calls to each other and then throw this number. That’s how this report has been done,’ Mr Paul told NDTV. 

‘There may be some late reporting of deaths but there’s no intent of any state or the Centre. If I apply the same three times yardstick to New York, then there would be 50,000 deaths. But they say it’s 16,000. So this is distorted,’ he added.  

Four relatives carry a dead body of a Covid-victim past shallow graves covered with cloths on the banks of the Ganges River in Shringverpur village

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