Why India Cannot Afford To Lift Its Lockdown


  • To reduce fresh wave of infections.
  • Rate of people affecting by Corona Virus.
  • To find the hotspot locations.

On March 24, India shut down its $ 2.9 trillion economy, shut down its businesses and issued house orders to more than one billion people to remain strict. Air, road and rail transport systems were suspended.

Now, more than two months after the first case of Covid-19 was detected in the country, more than 5,000 people have tested positive and around 150 have died. As the test intensified, the true picture is emerging. The virus is spreading in dense communities and new groups of infections are emerging every day. Lifting the lockdown can trigger a fresh wave of infections.

A drastic lockdown is sure to slow the disease. The virologist said that I believe that India is still in the early stage of infection. The country still does not have enough data on the communicative capacity of the virus or even how many people can become infected and recovered to develop sufficient herd immunity. (It is slowly introducing finger prick blood tests to check for the presence of protective antibodies.)

Infections have been reported in more than 250 districts out of 700 in India. Reports state that at least seven states have a third of all infections, and want the lockdown to be extended. Six states have reported groups of rapidly growing infections - from the capital Delhi in the north to Maharashtra in the west and Tamil Nadu in the south.

Economic collapse

Not surprisingly, the lockdown is already hurting the economy. Many of the early hotspots are economic growth engines and contribute heavily to revenue in government coffers. Mumbai, the financial capital of India and the main city of Maharashtra, accounts for more than a third of the total tax collection. The densely populated city has experienced more than 500 cases and 45 deaths, and the number is steadily increasing. Officials say the infection is now spreading through the community. Mumbai has made it mandatory to wear face masks.

Many of these hotspot clusters also have manufacturing bases. The spread of infections means that they will be subject to prolonged lockdown.

The service industry, which generates about half of India's GDP, is also likely to remain closed for some more time. Construction, which accounts for a large proportion of migrant workers, will remain suspended. According to a report by the Center for Monitoring Indian Economy, the unemployment rate after lockdown may already be over 20%.

For now, economists say, the government must prioritize farming over everything else to ensure the livelihood of millions of people and secure the country's future food supply.

Half of India's labor force works on farms. The lockdown occurred when the winter bumper crop was to be harvested and sold, and the rainfed summer crop had to be sown. The immediate challenge is harvesting and marketing the first crop, and securing the second.

With enough social disturbances and hand washing to take the growing trucks to produce and take them to the markets, something that the government will have to move quickly.

"The immediate challenge is to ensure that rural India does not get hit," says Rathin Ray, an economist. "In fact, a full lockdown cannot be sustained continuously before the beginning of May. We have no choice but to slowly reopen after this."

There is little doubt on that. For his part, SK Sarin, who heads a government advisory panel to combat the disease, says the lockdown can only be molded "classically in areas that are not hotspots" and hotspots closed. Have been done.

Like other affected countries, India must prepare itself that Gabriel Leung, an infectious disease epidemiologist and dean of medicine at the University of Hong Kong, has described several rounds of "suppression and lift" cycles.

During these periods "restrictions are enforced and relaxed, re-enforced and re-relaxed, in ways that can keep the epidemic under control but at an acceptable economic and social cost."

Also, Drs. Leung says, "The best way to do this is to vary by country, depending on its means, tolerance for disintegration and the collective will of its people. In all cases, however, the challenge is essentially that of comb There is a three-way war. It is disease, protecting the economy and maintaining the society equally ".

India locked out to save millions

It is now clear that the shutdown needs to continue until transmission is clearly slowed, and testing and health infrastructure has been beefed up to manage the outbreak.

Experts in the southern state of Kerala say that the striking one, suffering from infection due to a transparent government and a strong public health system, says that there is no time yet to lift the lockdown and has recommended a three-phase waiver.

For most countries, easing lockdown is a difficult policy option. It raises the prospect of creating a fresh wave of infection and presents the inevitable tradeoff between life and livelihood. France's Prime Minister, Edouard Philippe, says the rest from the lockout in his country is going to be "scary". In such a crisis, according to their Dutch counterpart Mark Rutte, leaders "have to make 100% decisions with 50% knowledge, and suffer the consequences."

It is going to be difficult for India with its huge size, dense population and public health system. In addition, no country in the world probably has so much inter-state migration of casual workers, which are the backbone of services and construction industries.

How India will manage to return these workers to their workplaces - factories, farms, construction sites, shops - at a time without substantial deregulation of public transport when congested trains and buses can become a vector of transmission and easily benefit Can neutralize.

Lockdown Extended In India Till 17th May

Policy options are very difficult, and answers are far from easy. India thwarted the lockout by not anticipating the migration of millions of migrant workers from the cities. The coming weeks will reveal whether the migrating men, women and children have carried the infection to their villages. The country cannot make the same mistakes again while trying to relax the lockdown. Nitin Pai of the Taxila Institution, a think tank, believes that states should be left to decide on sanctions instinctively, and that the decision should be "based on the risk of infection", which should be determined by extensive testing.

This week Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that "the situation in the country is similar to a social emergency". His government now needs to ensure that the health and economic progress of the nation is under threat.

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