NEW DELHI (BLOOMBERG) – India may be hit by a third wave of Covid-19 far sooner than predicted because people are ignoring guidelines, the Times of India cited Dr Randeep Guleria, director at the state-run All India Institute of Medical Sciences, as saying.

Infections could start rising again in 12 to 16 weeks, the report quoted Dr Guleria as saying.

That compares with the four to five months new waves are expected to take to peak, the Times of India reported on Sunday (June 20).

Dr Guleria earlier told a television channel that a third wave could come as early as in six to eight weeks’ time, according to the report.

He said the highly transmissible Delta variant of the virus is believed to be responsible for India’s “devastating second wave” and continues to pose a high risk to a large section of the population that has not yet been vaccinated, according to the Times of India report.

India’s confirmed coronavirus cases have surpassed 29 million, with more than 380,000 deaths.

Experts believe both numbers are vastly under-counted.