Does India Need A Countrywide Lockdown To Break The Spread Wave?
The Centre is in deep trouble. There are evident questions being raised over the leadership. The main opposition is now pushing for a complete nationwide lockdown. This has come as India crossed the 20 million lives lost mark over the second wave of the Covid-19 variant.
According to the Congress Party, there has been a ‘virtual collapse of health services’. Political analysts are saying that we might need to go into lockdown in order to break the chain. But as India is starting to recover from the economic impact that a prolonged lockdown had on the economy last year, there is resistance from the Centre.
However, there is an evident flattening in the wave and a total lockdown will only mean that the virus can travel into smaller villages and towns that are still partially affected. As last year, workers were forced to start moving back into their villages, livelihoods were lost and migrant workers suffered the worst.
Speaking to an international media agency, Congress has been vehemently seeking a countrywide lockdown. “We are now forced- there is no option- (we) will have to resort to a national lockdown to break the chain. This is the only way we can restore some order in the health services.”
Strangely, the request is being second by international health experts, senior politicians and business leaders. However, decision to impose restrictions still rest with individual states and PM Narendra Modi is urging politicians to look at country wide lockdown as the last resort.
Even if India has to go into a countrywide lockdown, it should be done more systematically that it was handled last time. In the year 2020, the Centre didn’t have time to respond due to the criticality of the situation India was facing. But we have learned from our lessons, and it might just be the right time to put things right that went wrong horribly then.
Meanwhile, reports are coming in that India’s cases have risen over the past week, but at a slower rate than in previous weeks. Daily cases have fallen in Delhi, Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra which are all hotspots of the crisis. Erratic testing, however, makes it hard to gauge the significance of these numbers.
Insufficient testing has proved to be another issue.