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Coronavirus: Lockdown in India must be extended to 49 days: Study

Ground Report | News Desk

Whole country went into 21 days of lockdown after Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced that the step was necessary to control the spread of coronavirus.

While many anticipated that the lockdown could last well beyond the initial 21-day period.

As per the study by two Indian-origin researchers at University of Cambridge has suggested the 21-day nationwide lockdown imposed by the BJP led Modi government might not be enough to contain the spread of the Novel Coronavirus completely.

The model prepared by Cambridge scholars Rajesh Singh and R. Adhikari indicates that novel coronavirus cases in India could spike sharply if the lockdown is not extended beyond the three-week period.

The study found that the virus outbreak might resurge after the three-week lockdown and could infect thousands within weeks. The study is also being examined by the Indian Council of Medical Research to chart-out future strategy.

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The study has rather suggested a straight-49-day lockdown or three lockdowns – for 21-days, 28-days and 18-days – with relaxations of five days in between in order to effectively curb the spread of the virus.

The model is possibly the first to include ”age and social contact structure of the Indian population” when assessing the impact of social distancing on the COVID-19 pandemic in the country.

The paper titled ”Age-structured impact of social distancing on the COVID-19 epidemic in India” has been published on open-access preprint repository ArXiv and is yet to be peer-reviewed.

The impact of social distancing measures — workplace non-attendance, school closure, lockdown — and their efficacy with duration has been investigated in the study.

The country’s total corona-affected patient count, including those who have been cured, has crossed 4,000 in India. The country which went in to the 21-day lockdown from March 24 midnight had more than 3757 active cases of coronavirus as of now.

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The researchers used an age-structured SIR model with social contact matrices obtained from surveys and Bayesian imputation to study the progress of the COVID-19 pandemic in India.