Unlock 2.0: 66% citizens believe a one-month complete lockdown in 15 high virus load districts is needed to contain COVID-19 spread in India
- • 79% citizens say a partial lockdown is needed in districts experiencing week-over-week increase in COVID-19 cases and having 500 active cases
- • The extension of PM Gareeb Kalyan Anna Yojana till November will allow the poor in these districts to sustain themselves during the lockdown period
July 1, 2020, New Delhi: Looking at the increasing number of cases, the Maharashtra Government announced a COVID-19 lockdown extension till 31st July and Nagaland announced an extension till 15th July. Tamil Nadu also announced a total lockdown in Chennai, Madurai, and surrounding areas till July 5 and from July 6 to July 31, Chennai will revert to pre-June 19 relaxed lockdown.
With the Prime Minister announcing the extension of the PM Gareen Kalyan Yojana till November providing free ration to the 80 crore poor, LocalCircles conducted a survey to get a citizen pulse on lockdown extension on the 15 high virus load districts in India, as identified by Niti Aayog. The survey received over 16,000 votes from 233 districts of India.
With the pan-India average number of COVID-19 cases rising from 11,000 per day to 20,000 per day, the first questions asked citizens if they believe a one month complete lockdown must be implemented in the top 15 high virus load districts of India to contain the spread. 66% respondents answered in a ‘yes’ while 27% answered in a ‘no’. 7% were unsure about it.
Unlock 2.0: 66% citizens believe a one month complete lockdown in 15 high virus load districts is needed to contain COVID-19 spread in India
The top 15 districts with highest virus load as identified by Niti Aayog include Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Ahmedabad, Thane, Pune, Indore, Kolkata, Jaipur, Surat, Hyderabad, Aurangabad, Jodhpur, Gurugram and Chengalpattu.
The comparison shows that the percentage of people wanting a complete lockdown in high viral load districts which stood at 74% on 12th June, has reduced a little, but is still very high at 66% as of 30th June.
Unlock 2.0 Citizen Pulse: Percentage of citizens in favour of complete lockdown in high virus load districts still very high at 66%
Presently, Delhi has 441 containment zones and Mumbai has over 750 containment zones. Tamil Nadu also has 704 containment zones across 26 districts in the state.
The Prime Minister in his speech on June 30th highlighted how an increasing number of people were not observing social distancing and wearing masks which could lead to further increase in cases of COVID-19 especially as India goes into the monsoon season.
Citizens were also asked besides the high virus load districts, what should be the approach to contain COVID-19 spread in districts with week-over-week case growth and 500 active cases. Cities like Bangalore that largely had contained COVID-19 well are now showing spikes with 500-600 new cases a day. To the survey on what should be done in such cities, 22% citizens said a complete lockdown should be imposed while 58% said a partial lockdown should be imposed where shops for essentials and offices, factories stay open, and rest everything stays shut. 12% said there should be no Lockdown at all, while 6% said there should be no Lockdown at all except night curfew. Such districts would total to approximately 30 districts across India.
Unlock 2.0: 79% citizens believe atleast a partial lockdown is needed in districts experiencing week over week increase in COVID-19 cases and having 500 active cases
India reported more than 3.5 lakh Coronavirus cases during Unlock 1.0. Although the COVID-19 recovery rate in India has improved to 58.67 percent, India continues to be the 4th worst hit country with over 2.1 lakh active cases and more than 16,000 deaths. The Centre on June 29th announced the guidelines for Unlock 2.0, which will be in force till end of July. Almost all activities have been allowed outside the containment zones, barring a few like metro services, opening of schools and colleges, gyms, bars, etc.
The results of the survey show that majority of the citizens are in favour of re-imposing a strict lockdown in the 15 high viral load districts so that the spread of COVID-19 in the country could be slowed down. LocalCircles will be writing to all state Chief Secretaries and District Magistrates for these 15 districts sensitising them about the same.
16,000+ responses were received from 233 districts of India. 62% respondents were men while 38% respondents were women. 48% respondents were from tier 1, 39% from tier 2 and 13% respondents were from tier 3, 4 and rural districts. They survey was conducted via LocalCircles platform and all participants are validated citizens who had to be registered with LocalCircles to participate in this survey.