The Centre stated before the Lok Sabha that the country successfully blunted the aggressive spread of COVID-19 by imposing country-wide lock-down.
It has been estimated that the decision of Lockdown, by slowing down the spread of pandemic in India, has prevented 14–29 lakh cases and 37–78 thousand deaths, said MoS Nityanand Rai in response to the query by Manish Tewari.
The Minister said that any mass movement of people would have spread the disease very fast amongst people in all parts of the country. The period of lockdown helped the nation create much required additional health infrastructure. "During this time, dedicated isolation beds recorded an increase of 22 times and dedicated ICU beds above 14 times to what existed in March 2020. Similarly, laboratory capacity for testing COVID was increased nearly 10 times during this period.Similarly, the limited indigenous manufacturing capacity available for masks, personal protective equipments, ventilators, etc. at the time of lockdown, was also enhanced to attain self-reliance.", the reply reads.
MP Manish Tewari had sought details of the exact inputs that impelled the Government to initiate a nation wide lockdown. The ministry said that it was based on the global experience and the need for consistency in the approach and implementation of various containment measures across the country.
Migration of large number of migrant workers was triggered by panic created by fake news
In response to another query by MP Mala Roy, the Ministry said that the migration of large number of migrant workers was triggered by panic created by fake news regarding duration of lockdown, and people, especially migrant labourers, were worried about adequate supply of basic necessities like food, drinking water, health services and shelter. "However, Central Government was fully conscious of this, and took all necessary measures to ensure that during the period of the inevitable lockdown, no citizen should be deprived of basic amenities of food, drinking water, medical facilities etc.", it said.