Is Unlock 1.0 coming at the right time? Here's what India's comparison with other COVID-hit countries suggests
New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: India has been witnessing an alarming spike in its coronavirus cases in the last one month, even as the country has entered the first phase of lifting of the lockdown, termed as “Unlock 1.0”.
Shopping malls, restaurants, hotels and religious places of worship reopen in most states from today after over two months that could pose new challenges to check the spread of the coronavirus.
Recording the first 1 lakh COVID-19 cases in as many as 111 days and being praised for containing the spread of the virus with one of the strictest lockdowns in the world, India’s cases rose from 1 lakh to 2 lakh in just 15 days.
India's case tally has already reached close to 2.5 lakh, taking the country to the fifth spot in the list of nations worst-hit from the deadly virus after USA, Russia, Brazil and UK.
Globally, the total number of global coronavirus has increased to nearly 7 million, while the death toll has topped 4,00,000, according to the data released by Worldometer.
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi took to Twitter on Friday to share a graphical comparison between the worst-hit nations, showing when each of them implemented the lockdown and lifted it.
As per the data shared by Gandhi, Spain, Germany, Italy and UK announced gradual lifting of lockdown at a time when their daily COVID-19 cases showed a downward trend, while “Unlock 1.0” in India comes at a time when the cases are on a record high.
This is what a failed lockdown looks like. pic.twitter.com/eGXpNL6Zhl— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) June 5, 2020
On Sunday, the Health Ministry data shows that the country reported a record 9,971 cases and 287 deaths in the last 24 hours.
India went under a complete lockdown on March 25. The lockdown, which was initially announced for three weeks, was later extended in four more phases, with the fifth and final phase continuing till June 30.
Meanwhile, the government announced several relaxations in curbs, firstly in early May when restricted movement of people, liquor shops and domestic helps were allowed, while maintaining social distancing norms.
On May 30, the Centre announced Unlock 1.0 from June 8 under which the lockdown will be relaxed to a great extent, including opening of shopping malls, restaurants and religious places, except those falling in containment zones.
The lifting of lockdown comes a time when the nation has been witnessing a record spike in its cases and deaths due to the novel coronavirus. The government has, however, has been touting India's mortality rate as a silver lining - at less than 3 per cent, it's among the lowest in the world.
Amid rising COVID-19 case tally, over 1 lakh beat coronavirus in India, recovery rate at 48 per cent
Restriction-free inter-state movement has already been allowed across the country from June 1. The states have accredited the sharp in cases to the movement of migrant workers back to their villages.
Let’s take a look at the data of coronavirus infections in other badly-hit countries and how they have implemented the lockdown:
The number of confirmed cases have topped 1.92 million mark with over 1 lakh deaths reported so far. Reaching a peak of over 39,000 cases a day in April, the country’s trend of COVID-19 cases has come down to less than 25,000 cases per day now.
Despite being the worst-hit country in the world, the Trump administration has been easing lockdown restrictions in several states after they showed a downward trend in the last two weeks. President Donald Trump is in favour of lifting the lockdown to revive the economy.
Brazil has the second highest number of COVID-19 cases globally, having recorded at least 6.72 lakh instances of the disease. Cases across the country multiplied by five across the month of May, according to Brazil's Health Ministry.
As per reports, the Brazilian government has stopped publishing a running total of coronavirus deaths and infections in an extraordinary move that critics call an attempt to hide the true toll of the disease in Latin America's largest nation.
Brazil is easing restrictions despite logging record number of daily coronavirus fatalities, with President Jair Bolsonaro saying that death is “everyone’s destiny”.
Last Tuesday, stores, beaches, and other venues in major cities like Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo were allowed to resume business.
Russia, the third worst-hit country in the world, too is easing restrictions despite the continuous spike in COVID-19 cases and deaths.
The country has so far recorded over 4.67 lakh cases and 5,800 deaths. Seeing the highest single-day spike of over 11,500 cases on May 11, Russia has been recording over 8,000 cases per day for over a month now.
Critics have accused authorities of under-reporting deaths and of putting people at risk by moving too quickly to lift the most severe lockdown measures.
The UK has, till date, recorded over 2.85 lakh confirmed cases of coronavirus and over 40,000 deaths. The country has seen a sharp downward trend in its cases and fatalities over the last one month.
After witnessing the biggest spike of over 8,500 cases on April 10, the country per day count has now come down to around 1,500 cases.
Prime minister Boris Johnson announced the UK lockdown on March 23. The process of easing the lockdown started on May 10 when Johnson detailed several stages and steps of the UK's coronavirus plan.
Spain has successfully contained the spread of the virus, from around 8,000 cases per day in first week of April to less 300 cases per day in first week of June.
Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez announced his government’s ‘Plan for the Transition towards a new normality’ on Tuesday 28 April. It is currently taking place over four phases.
Germany's calm and successful handling of the pandemic attracted international attention. Germany is among the 10 countries most affected by coronavirus, but has the lowest fatality rate, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.
From nearly 7,000 cases per day on several days in end of March and beginning of April to less than 500 cases per day in first week of June, the country has started reopening on a state-by-state basis after enacting lockdown measures starting March 22.
The total confirmed cases in Italy have topped 2.34 lakhs and the deaths due to the virus nearing 34,000-mark. Both cases and deaths in the country have been on a downward trend since last week of March.
With the pandemic in the country slowing down over the last few weeks, the 10-week lockdown, which was announced on March 9, has been further eased.
From June 3, people in Italy were allowed to move freely within the country. Travel restrictions were also eased the same day, so travellers from European Union and passport-free Schengen-area countries, as well as the UK, Andorra, and Monaco, can visit Italy without subjecting to quarantine.
Posted By: Abhinav Gupta