Preparing for exit-THE HINDU-08-04-2020


Given that this is harvest season, cessation of activity due to labour issues can trigger food deficits and high prices. Reducing the risk of withdrawal from lockdown will depend on prioritised actions. The experience of China, South Korea and Singapore, who are ahead of the curve thus far, provides pointers to opening up of activity after a phase of movement curbs. With high emphasis on social distancing, universal mask use and hand washing, it should be possible to open up some activity and release the pressures building up under the lockdown.

The identification of hotspots, where a virtual lockdown could be in force even if the nationwide curbs are relaxed, would require planned, humane measures to ensure availability of food, other essentials and medicines. Mass gatherings, long-distance travel and leisure activity would have to wait. Urban mobility for workers in the absence of public transport could be made possible by encouraging bicycle use where feasible, avoiding congestion.

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