NEW DELHI: A survey has found that 62 percent of parents will not be sending their children to school even if they are reopened on government's orders on September 1.
According to the LocalCircles survey, only 6 per cent citizens are willing to visit multiplexes and theatres to watch movies in the next 60 days, even if they open on September 1.
Only 36 per cent citizens say they will take metro or local trains in the next 60 days if they are restarted on September 1.
All this is when India's daily caseload for COVID-19 has now reached 70,000 cases and is now the highest in the world by a margin of over 40 per cent.
With close to 400 districts with 1,000 total cases, COVID-19 is fast spreading into tier 3, 4 towns and rural India. In the LocalCircles survey in late July, 31 per cent citizens said that they had one or more COVID-19 positive cases in their social network.
As the Government decides on whether schools should be reopened for senior classes, LocalCircles asked parents that if the Government does go ahead and announces opening of schools from September 1 for senior classes and others thereafter, will they be sending their children/grandchildren to school. To this, 62 per cent outright saId 'no', while only 23 per cent answered 'yes'. Around 15 per cent parents were undecided.
Given the fact that the COVID situation is not improving and numbers are only rising, the number of "aye" sayers has now reduced from 33 per cent to 23 per cent within 2 weeks. This indicates that even if schools were opened in regular manner, a large majority of parents will refrain from sending children to school and continue with online education instead.
Case studies from many countries, including the US where 97,000 children came down with COVID-19 within 2 weeks of school reopening; and also in Berlin, Germany, where 41 schools reported children or teachers getting infected last week. All of these are causing concerns amongst Indian parents.
Most parents are of the view that India shouldn't even consider reopening schools in regular mode till December 31 and instead the focus of Central and State Governments should be on equipping schools for online education, television or radio-based classes directly or in alliance with industry through the CSR programs.
LocalCircles conducted a survey to understand what citizens feel about opening of multiplex and movie theaters, metro or local trains and most importantly, schools. The survey received over 25,000 responses from citizens residing in 261 districts of India.
Citizens were asked if the government decides to restart metro/local trains from September 1, will they be taking them in the next 60 days. A total of 36 per cent answered 'yes' while 51 per cent answered 'no'; 13 per cent were unsure about it.
After opening restaurants, gyms and malls, the Government is considering reopening multiplexes and movie theaters in the next phase of 'unlock' guidelines, slated to be issued by August-end.
Citizens have continuously been opposing the reopening of movie halls as they could lead to an increase in spread of COVID-19.
The survey asked if the Government opens multiplexes and movie theatres from September 1, will they go to watch movies in the next 60 days. Three per cent said they will go many times while 3 per cent said they will go once or twice. It was a whopping 77 per cent who said will not go to movie halls at all to keep themselves safe, while 14 per cent said they don't go to movie theatres anyways to watch movies.
The comparison with last month's survey shows that citizens favouring opening of multiplexes and movie theatres is not increasing like in the case of metro and local trains. An increased number of people are not in favour of reopening theatres and multiplexes. It is a 77 per cent of citizens in August compared to 72 per cent in July, who have said they will not visit multiplexes or movie theatres in the next 60 days. (IANS)
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