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India may see a Third Wave of COVID-19 Pandemic, No Point in having Weekend Lockdowns or Night Curfews: Dr. Guleria

Dr. Guleria rejected the night curfews and weekend lockdowns that some states have imposed to bring down the COVID-19 cases

India may see a Third Wave of COVID-19 Pandemic, No Point in having Weekend Lockdowns or Night Curfews: Dr. Guleria

Sentinel Digital Desk


New Delhi: Dr. Randeep Guleria, All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) Director, said on Tuesday that India may see a third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic if the virus continues to evolve further and develops an immune escape mechanism.
He rejected the night curfews and weekend lockdowns that some states have imposed to bring down the COVID-19 cases. When asked if a nationwide shutdown is the only option left in view of the COVID emergency in India which has overwhelmed hospitals and caused a crisis of resources such like oxygen, Dr. Guleria said a lockdown for a sufficient duration is needed to cut virus transmission.
Speaking with India Today TV, Dr. Guleria said, "Three things need to be looked at here. The first is improving the hospital infrastructure. The second is decreasing the number of cases in an aggressive way and the third, rolling out of vaccines. We have to break the chain of transmission. If we decrease the close contact between humans, there is a possibility that the cases will come down."
"India will possibly see another wave but since a large number of people will get vaccinated, the wave may not be as big as the current wave of coronavirus," he added.
Dr. Guleria explained about lockdown that a regional lockdown based on a grated response like the UK did, depending upon the criteria we all want, state-level or larger level. Policymakers need to decide because it's an issue of organising everything in terms of lives and livelihood and that essential services are maintained and at the same time looking after those people who are daily wage workers.
"If we talk about the lockdown, it has to be for a sufficient duration of at least two weeks. It has to be aggressive. There's no point in having a weekend lockdown or a night curfew," he further explained.
However, he said that focus can't only be continued on hospital infrastructure unless the focus is also on decreasing the number of COVID-19 cases. There is no point in weekend lockdowns and night curfews. The lockdown has to be aggressive for a sufficient period of time.
Dr. Guleria also said that India will possibly see another wave but he's hopeful that by that time, because a large number of people will get vaccinated, the wave may not be as big as the current wave of coronavirus and it will be easier to manage.
Moreover, on the double mutant variants in India, he said the variants India seeing are more infectious than what was seen last year. "The virus is spreading at a much more rapid pace, the curve itself is so sharp, it's vertical, as compared to the last time. We can't keep on blaming this on lack of Covid-appropriate behaviour. There has to be some degree of change in the virus," he added.


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