Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Monday expressed his doubts that the 21-day lockdown to curb the spread the spread of COVID-19 coronavirus, may be extended further.
In a tweet, he said the conditions of India amid such lockdowns are unique, which require different steps to be carried out.
“India is currently in the midst of a three-week lockdown, I suspect that the government will eventually extend this even further. It is critical for us to understand that India’s conditions are unique. We will be required to take different steps than other large countries who are following a total lockdown strategy,” the Congress leader said in a tweet by INC.
— Congress (@INCIndia) March 30, 2020
However, the Government has denied reports claiming that the nationwide lockdown over the Coronavirus pandemic will be extended, calling them “baseless”.
Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba said he was ‘surprised’ at reports suggestive of an extension in the 21-day nationwide lockdown period. The top bureaucrat dismissed the speculation, saying that there were no such plans to do the same.
As per the Government order, the lockdown ends on April 14.
Rahul Gandhi had on Sunday written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi saying that the “complete economic shutdown may disastrously amplify the death toll”.
“Millions of India’s elderly live in villages. A complete lockdown and the resulting shut down of our economic engine will almost certainly ensure that millions of unemployed youth rush back to their villages, increasing the risk of infecting their parents and the elderly population living there. This will result in a catastrophic loss of life,” he said.
“It is critical for us to understand that India’s conditions are unique. We will be required to take different steps than other large countries who are following a total lockdown strategy. The number of poor people in India who are dependent on a daily income is simply too large for us to unilaterally shut down all economic activity. The consequences of a complete economic shut down will disastrously amplify the death toll arising from the COVID-19 virus,” he added.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on March 24 announced a complete lockdown of the entire country for 21 days in an unprecedented drastic measure to try halt the spread of Coronavirus shortly after which the Centre said all road, rail and air services will remain suspended during this period.