04 August, 2021

Did The Lockdown Work? What Did It Do? What Would Have Happened Without It?

Questions on governance remain even as scientists estimate that the lockdown averted as many as 32,000 fatalities till May 15

Did The Lockdown Work? What Did It Do? What Would Have Happened Without It?

This one executive decision was deemed at first to be a no-brainer. Perhaps a faint dread preceded it, blended with a resigned sense of inevitability—as if for an elemental event beyond our control, the way we may anticipate news of a solar eclipse sweeping the land that would offer no clear promise of when the sun would shine again. Still, for a country blessed with frighteningly fractious opinions on everything, there had been near-unanimity on this. No political party, no social segment, no corporate lobby, nor even any healthcare expert had offered a serious objection. Stunningly simple at one level, it was also profound in the way it straitened our primary conditions of living. Poets, historians and sociologists will have their say another day. But the immediate, practical question is: did it work? As Week 9, 10 and 11 of the lockdown saw public transport and air travel thaw out messily from a freeze—as India daily counts a new crest in numbers, and balks at counting the social and economic costs of internal migration on a never-before scale—one...

Latest Magazine

August 09, 2021

other articles from the issue

articles from the previous issue

Other magazine section