Wednesday, Oct 21, 2020 | Last Update : 12:56 AM IST

195th Day Of Lockdown

Maharashtra1443409114960338084 Andhra Pradesh7192566588755981 Karnataka6406615157829286 Tamil Nadu6088555529389653 Uttar Pradesh4031013468595864 Delhi2827522506135401 West Bengal2603242287555017 Odisha222734190080912 Kerala204242131048772 Telangana1992761701091163 Bihar178882164537888 Assam169985139977655 Gujarat1332191132403417 Rajasthan1288591077181441 Haryana1237821059901307 Madhya Pradesh117588932382207 Punjab107096840253134 Chhatisgarh9856566860777 Jharkhand7770964515661 Jammu and Kashmir69832495571105 Uttarakhand4533233642555 Goa3107125071386 Puducherry2548919781494 Tripura2412717464262 Himachal Pradesh136799526152 Chandigarh112128677145 Manipur9791760263 Arunachal Pradesh8649623014 Nagaland5768469311 Meghalaya5158334343 Sikkim2707199431 Mizoram178612880
  Opinion   Edit  22 Sep 2020  AA Edit | Tackle corona or face the voter's ire

AA Edit | Tackle corona or face the voter's ire

Published : Sep 22, 2020, 8:07 pm IST
Updated : Sep 22, 2020, 8:07 pm IST

A renewed urgency and a prompter response is the absolute need of the hour

India has no choice to perform two miracles: tackle the coronavirus pandemic and reopen the economy. (AP file photo)
 India has no choice to perform two miracles: tackle the coronavirus pandemic and reopen the economy. (AP file photo)

Even as coronavirus figures continue to soar in India and Europe faces the prospect of a second wave, we get the bad news that SARS-CoV-2 reinfections are real. The official caseload in India has now surpassed the 5.5 million mark, and a vaccine is several months away and, by all estimates, will take longer to reach citizens.

But the economy must be reopened at all costs. It will take a minimum of two months to restore it to its pre-Covid state, the C. Rangarajan committee  advising the Tamil Nadu government has suggested. The Centre is implementing what it has cheesily dubbed Unlock 4.0: as part of this, older students are returning to school in some parts of the country; international flights are beginning to operate in air bubble arrangements; and the Taj Mahal is receiving visitors. The ongoing monsoon session of Parliament, however, had to be curtailed by several days, jeopardising important legislative decisions.


Autumn’s lower temperatures plus the reopening will undoubtedly bring on a second wave of the coronavirus in India. The crisis unfolding is worse than we imagined with the virus reaching rural India. Experts suggest that the Covid-19 pandemic will peak at different times in different parts of the country. Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Uttar Pradesh currently have the highest number infections; of these the last three states have experienced late surges.

A renewed urgency for health infrastructure, doctors, drugs, ventilators and a prompter and more localised administrative response coordinated by state governments and effectively bolstered by central funds and support is the absolute need of the hour. Of these, drug manufacture is our area of strength and we have done some good work on expanding laboratory and testing infrastructure.


The Delhi High Court on Tuesday stayed the Delhi government’s September 13 order making it mandatory for 33 private hospitals to reserve 80 per cent of their intensive care unit (ICU) beds as prima facie violative of fundamental rights. It is a welcome ruling. Most coronavirus patients improve with administration of palliatives and home isolation is sufficient to contain the disease. That is indeed a silver lining. India has topped the world both in the daily infection rate as well as number of recoveries. Health workers have put their shoulder to the wheel and are working heroically against odds.

If only these odds were fewer in number. The governments — state and central — have no choice but to perform or face electoral ire.


Tags: india coronavirus, india economy, india covid response