A 30-year-old man in India died after consuming kerosene, believing it to be a cure for COVID-19.

The incident took place in the state of Madhya Pradesh. Authorities said the deceased believed he had contracted the virus as he had a fever for a few days. However, his coronavirus report, which came after his death, was negative. The victim was identified by his first name Mahendra, who, according to police, was a tailor by profession.

The man had fever for nearly five to six days, and despite taking medicines his body temperature was not returning to normal, The Times of India reported. Mahendra believed he may be COVID-19 positive. One of his friends suggested drinking kerosene can kill the coronavirus. The victim believed his friend and drank the flammable hydrocarbon oil, which is available in the majority of households in the country.

His condition worsened two days after consuming kerosene, and his family rushed him to a nearby hospital. The hospital authorities refused to admit him, citing non-availability of bed. His family then rushed him to a different hospital.

“Around two days ago, when his family members were informed that a bed was available at a private hospital in Ahsoka Garden, they shifted him there. Doctors declared him dead on Saturday,” The Times of India quoted a source as saying.

A police officer said the hospital authorities took his samples for a COVID-19 test, and the reports came negative, according to India Today.

As the country is grappling with a high surge in COVID-19 cases, several unproven theories have surfaced related to the cure for the virus that has claimed several lives across the world. Since the start of May, 66,866 people have been reported because of COVID-19. So far, 22.66 million cases and 246,116 deaths have been reported.

Recently, a minister for the ruling-Bharatiya Janata Party, Pragya Thakur, claimed the urine of cows could help prevent COVID-19 infection. "I regularly use this cow urine. I am in huge trouble, health-wise. But due to this remedy, I am not required to take any medicine for Covid-19," Thakur said in a video, which had gone viral.

A health worker collects a nasal swab sample from a woman to test for the Covid-19 coronavirus in Amritsar, India on April 18, 2021
Representational image of a health worker collecting nasal swab sample from a woman to test for the Covid-19 in India AFP / Narinder NANU