COVID-19 in India: Has the country reached the peak? Here is what govt-appointed scientists think

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October 19, 2020 2:16 PM

The coronavirus pandemic in India is being studied by many scientists and researchers in the country.

The committee has suggested given the festive period in October- November or the winters, the viral caseload is expected to rise.

The coronavirus pandemic in India is being studied by many scientists and researchers in the country. For long, there has been discussions as to when the country will attain its COVID-19 peak. According to a committee of scientists appointed by the Ministry of Science and Technology, the infection has peaked last month and if people continue to take all precautionary measures, the vital transmission will take its due course till February next year. A report by The IE noted that the committee is headed by Prof M Vidyasagar of IIT Hyderabad who is using a new model in order to map the COVID-19 trajectory in the country.

The report said that it is the key finding of this model that indicated that India attained its Coronavirus peak (first wave) in the mid-September, at a time when the number of active cases in the country crossed 10.17 lakh. Since then, the number is on a downward road, declining steadily for a one month now. Apart from this, the committee has suggested given the festive period in October- November or the winters, the viral caseload is expected to rise. However, the increase will not be much to surpass the numbers that were recorded in September for active cases.

While more than 75 lakh cases have been recorded in India so far (symptomatic), the committee has said that come February 2021, the total number of Coronavirus cases in the country will not be more than 1.6 crore. Notably, as per the report, the numbers are based on the assumption that people will follow all physical and social distancing measures along with other preventive measures including wearing a mask and hand sanitisation. Citing Prof Manindra Agrawal of IIT Kanpur, the report said that this is not the time for people or the government to lower its guard, especially at a time when festivals are approaching. Further, the committee highlighted that early lockdown announced in March this year has also played a role in reducing the significant COVID-19 impact in the country and preventing many more deaths.

In a note, the committee wrote that had it not been for the lockdown, the Indian healthcare system would have been overwhelmed in a very short period of time, so much so, that it would have resulted in more than 26 lakh fatalities. The infection would have reached more than 1.4 crore people in just three months. Therefore, the committee asserted that lockdown helped with the Coronavirus growth curve in India.

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