BENGALURU: As April 15 inches closer, Bengalureans are left wondering what the best way to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic is. While some are firm in their belief about the extension of the initial three-week lockdown, others wonder if a plan based on every district’s progress with containing
the outbreak is better. City residents speak to City Express and weigh in with their thoughts.
Dr KR Venugopal, Vice-Chancellor, Bangalore University
It depends on the situation on April 14. In our country, it is best to look into the situation in phases. We have to see how the situation is in certain districts. If a particular district is highly affected, then they should go for a further lockdown. And if a particular district is not that affected, maybe we can lift the lockdown and see what the situation is like there after. It would be great if we can take more regular tests on people and isolate the people who are infected. That way we can curb the spread of the virus.
Reshmi Nathan, teacher
Though the lockdown was able to slow the spread of the infection, it couldn’t contain it. Hence it is a difficult decision for the government to remove the lockdown. The question is whether India can bear the burden of economic disruption. Can the fragile healthcare system respond adequately to spike in cases? A proactive prevention strategy is needed. Continuing the lockdown in worst affected areas and lifting it in others is an option. Resumption of flights and trains should be on a case to case basis. Schools, colleges, malls, theatres must remain closed, and the ban on gatherings should continue.
Nisha Millet, sportsperson
The lockdown should be extended because the number of cases is still going up. But they should make more provisions to get more groceries. As long as they can ensure that essentials are supplied regularly, trucks are not stopped at the border, farmers don’t have to dump produce, we will be good. The lockdown should be continued because it is the safety concern of the community. People like us who are privileged should be grateful that we are safe and indoors.
Shashank Purushotham, actor
Going by the increase in the number of cases, the lockdown should be extended. But certain services, like plumbing, or tech services, basic repair services, should be made available in a staggered way, keeping social distancing in mind. Because right now it’s a little too harsh to cut off all services. Certain services should be opened.
Amit Ahuja, Restaurateur
We have done a good job so far with the lockdown. In order to contain the spread of the virus, we will need to continue to maintain the social distancing. This is going to have a direct negative impact on the economy but if we don’t do this now, the impact is only going to be much larger.
Dr Sudarshan Ballal, chairman, Manipal Hospitals
I believe the lockdown will have to be extended but maybe it could be in a partial manner. Obviously, essential services should continue to be exempt, and we should look at the best way to provide for the daily workers to earn a living while maintaining social distancing. The further extension would depend on the trend of COVID-19 in the next few days. When the lockdown is lifted, it needs to be done in a phased manner so that there is no sudden spurt in cases again.
Sridevi Ramesh, student
The lockdown should definitely be extended until a permanent solution to the virus is found because it is still dangerous. The government should come up with schemes to help migrant and daily wage workers. Our exams have been postponed and it is really uncertain right now if we will be having them. But it is better to wait for the situation to normalise before any decisions about exams are taken.