Unlock-3: Is the government prepared?

Unlock 3 will be starting from August 1, with COVID-19 cases crossing 15 lakh mark and single day spike reaching 50,000 but the real question remains what is the preparedness of the government


NH Web Desk

The conflicting objectives of stemming a surge in coronavirus cases and the urgency to reopen a crippled economy are posing a major policy challenge to the Narendra Modi government, which is preparing to lift the remaining curbs on economic activities from 1 August.

1. Amid COVID-19 surge, Narendra Modi government is preparing to lift the remaining curbs from August 1

While the Centre has lifted most restrictions outside containment zones, administrative units such as districts and municipal corporations in several states are imposing new restrictions on movements, complicating the revival of business activities.

2. There has been a conflict between Centre and states regarding restrictions

This, along with the surge in infections and doubts about a rebound in demand, are holding back many businesses from deploying capital in operations in the right manner.There is no clarity in communication between Centre and the States.India has reported over 15 lakh infections so far.

3. India is facing the most challenging time with over 15 lakh cases and crippling economy

Besides schools and colleges, services such as metro rail, movie halls, gyms and bars and social and political gatherings are not allowed as per the home ministry order last month. Various industry groups have asked the government to ease restrictions further, subject to safeguards.

4. Various industry groups have demanded ease in restrictions

The economy has been sinking with no hopes of recovery soon, the lockdowns and restrictions announced by government lacked planning thus creating an adverse impact on both the pandemic and the economic curve

5. Unplanned lockdowns hit the economy and pandemic adversely

  On the contrary government and officials have, however, expressed confidence that a V-shaped economic recovery will take hold in the coming quarters after a deep contraction in the June quarter. The Centre is now gradually reopening international air travel through bilateral deals after opening domestic air travel at one-third capacity.

6. Government is gradually reopening the international air travel

Cinemas, which have been shut since mid-March, are likely to be one of the services to be reopened in the next phase, with the information and broadcasting ministry suggesting to the home ministry to consider the same.

7. Unlock 3 might see a reopening of the cinema halls

Bollywood has ended its worst first six months of the year with losses of over ₹1,000 crore as theaters remain shut for more than four months now. Theatre chains have already invested in contactless transactions and sensors have replaced physical body checks.

8. Bollywood has faced over Rs. 1000 crores of losses due to lockdown

As lockdown orders continue to be enforced in many parts of the country, businesses and livelihoods are under tremendous pressure due to a collapse in demand, layoffs and wage reductions, industry chamber Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Ficci) said in a statement on Monday

9. Businesses and livelihoods are under tremendous pressure due to a collapse in demand

The industry body urged policymakers to reopen cinemas, multiplexes, schools and colleges as well as to lift the restrictions on aviation and tourism, with safeguards.

10. FICCI has urged the government to reopen all economic activity with safeguards.

States have been adopting their unlock strategies based on the local situation of the pandemic. The sharp decline in infections in Delhi has encouraged chief minister Arvind Kejriwal to focus on the economy. Neighbouring Haryana has no plans to impose any more lockdowns in the state, chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar

11. States are adopting their unlock strategies based on the local situation

As Unlock3 approaches the number of coronavirus cases each have reached 50,000, there is still no strategy to increase testing and control the spread of the pandemic

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Published: 29 Jul 2020, 9:03 PM