Cure can’t be Worse than Disease: Proposal for Extension of Lockdown Comes under Criticism

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Waquar Hasan | Clarion India

NEW DELHI – There are reports that suggest the Central government may extend the nationwide lockdown after the expiry of the ongoing lockdown on 15 April.

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has already extended the lockdown to the end of this month in Odisha while Telengana chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to continue the lockdown for an extended period. According to the reports, the PM Modi, in a meeting, hinted that the lockdown could be extended.

While the Central government has not announced its extension as yet, the proposal has already started facing resistance in view of the enormous sufferings of the poor across India. Reports of starvation are pouring in from different parts of the country even as many people are still stranded in different places because of sudden enforcement of the lockdown.

The extension of the lockdown will mean extension of their sufferings for the poor and the downtrodden. They bluntly say if the lockdown is extended, they will die.

Poll strategist Prashant Kishor questioned the lockdown saying he was not able to find any wisdom in the policy of the lockdown. He asked why the government was trying to find solution to health crisis through administrative policies?

“It is simply incomprehensible to see a police-led generalised lockdown pushed as a panacea to get over a public health emergency and economic crisis like #CoronaPandemic,” tweeted Kishor after reports came out that there will be extension of the lockdown.

In a series of tweets, author and journalist, Minhaz Merchant, also questioned the extension of the lockdown saying that cure can’t be worse than disease.

“Obviously, the cure can’t be worse than the disease. Hence, rational, phased lifting of lockdown bar hot spots & containment zones. 80% of cases are reportedly in just 62 districts. Can’t keep the rest of the country shut with extension after extension after extension,” tweeted Marchant, who is a supporter of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party.

In another tweet, he suggested that rather than extending the lockdown, the hotspot should be sealed. Because, the virus will not go away even after 30 April.

“Extension will be used politically to justify poor economic performance. Everyone’s off the hook with this populist move, playing on Indians’ fears. As if the virus will be gone on April 29. Right approach is to lift lockdown in phases from April 15, bar hot spots,” he said.

Reacting to the report of the extension of the lockdown, another rightwing journalist R jagannathan also opposed the decision of the extension of the lockdown by calling it a “bad idea”.

“Bad idea to keep extending lockdown. Need to find a way out, not revel in shutting everything down,” tweeted Jaganathan.

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