Police in Delhi, the capital of India, have asked local authorities to identify other cremation sites.
A fierce second wave ravages parts of India, overwhelming hospitals, morgues and crematoriums.
The total number of Covid cases topped 18 million on Thursday with 386,452 infections recorded – the largest single-day increase on record for any country.
More than 390 deaths have occurred in Delhi, the highest the capital has seen in a single day since the start of the pandemic.
“Deaths in the city are mainly related to Covid and due to lack of space people are forced to cremate loved ones in unnamed crematoriums to take Covid victims. This is why we suggested creating more crematoriums, ”a Delhi policeman told NDTV news channel.
Oxygen, drugs and hospital beds continue to be scarce, with people taking to social media to find it for their loved ones.
India’s central government is increasingly criticized for its handling of the pandemic and for allowing electoral rallies and religious festivals to take place.
But the health minister defended the government on Thursday, saying the country’s death rate was the lowest in the world and oxygen supplies were “adequate”.
Harsh Vardhan told ANI news agency that oxygen was now “available from many sources”, including those overseas, and that storage and cryogenic tankers were also being prepared. .
Experts say lockouts and vaccinations are the only way out.
On Saturday, all adults over 18 in India will become eligible for vaccination. But although India is the world’s largest producer of vaccines, it does not have sufficient stocks for the 800 million people who will become eligible.
Several states are already reporting vaccine shortages.
India’s financial capital, Mumbai, which has more than 20 million people, has suspended its vaccination campaign for three days due to “the exhaustion of available vaccines,” the civic body said in a statement.
Mumbai City Commissioner Ashwini Bhide said on Twitter that the city would reserve current stocks for people over the age of 45.