COVID-19 cases in India crossed the 6-million-mark with more than 80,000 cases being reported daily. The death toll has also crossed 95000. India is the second most affected country by the pandemic coming in close at second after the United States of America, which has reported over 7.3 million cases till date.
The recovery rate in India is among the highest in the world and has risen to 83.01%. This significantly reduced the gap between the number of active coronavirus cases and total cases reported to date.
In order to curb the spread of this unknown disease, India, like several other countries, had implemented a complete shut down in the month of March. The lockdown was gradually relieved in certain phases as “unlock” by the center while the restriction on certain activities was still prevalent. In the fourth phase, several major activities were given a green flag like the resumption of metro in Delhi and also the reopening of the schools from classes 9th to 12th.
October is a festive month in India and Unlock 5.0 may have several things in galore which the businesses and people are looking forward to.
- CINEMA HALLS TO OPEN IN WEST BENGAL FROM OCTOBER 1ST
Multiplexes and cinemas were kept shut for a long duration by the government. West Bengal announced the reopening of cinema halls from October 1st with limited seating and stringent measures. This indicates that other states might also allow the same in Unlock 5.0.
- MORE RELAXATIONS FOR SCHOOLS
Schools had already started operating classes for the students of class 9th to 12th from September 21st on a voluntary basis. More relaxations are anticipated to be released in Unlock 5.0 for the schools, but the primary level school may remain closed for an extended period. Colleges and Universities have already started their admission process, and online classes are expected to be conducted for the upcoming academic sessions/ semesters.
- RELAXATIONS FOR THE TOURISM INDUSTRY
The most severe impact of the lockdown was faced by the tourism sector. Ban on flights, inter-state and even inter-district travel, posed a lot of problems for the people. Travel activities were resumed from the first phase of Unlock, but the tourism sector was still left stagnant. Unlock 5.0 may come with several relaxations for the industry. Agra had opened Taj Mahal for the tourists from September 21st. Sikkim has also allowed the operation of hotels, home-stays and guest houses. States are expected to open their borders for inter-state tourism.
- MORE ECONOMIC ACTIVITIES TO RESUME
With the festive season around the corner, the government is expected to allow more economic activities to resume. Malls, restaurants and gyms were already given the green flag. More relaxations may be announced by the government. In the recent conference with the state ministers, the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi had suggested creating micro-containment zones, to better manage the situation.
The lockdown has gravely affected the economy of the world, with GDP growth becoming negative for several countries. Normalization is being implemented gradually to help sustain the economy and livelihoods of the citizens.