Lockdown showing positive results and no community spread of coronavirus in India yet; cabinet secretary denies reports of lockdown extension

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The Indian government has said that the ongoing nationwide lockdown was bearing positive results, adding that people needed to maintain their level of alertness. Speaking to reporters on Monday, Luv Agarwal, a joint secretary in the ministry of health and family welfare, said that India was not in the community stage yet.

community spread

He told reporters that ‘technically’ India was still ‘in the local transmission stage.’ Agarwal said, “Nowhere, we are saying there’s a community transmission. It’s only local transmission in this country. Let me repeat this.”

Agarwal said that the government will be the first to inform citizens if there was a community transmission of the virus. Community transmission is where a person tests positive for the virus even without any previous travel history or contact with those having travelled abroad.

Agarwal also said that the 21-day lockdown announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi was beginning to yield positive results. Agarwal said, “We analysed that during the lockdown stage it took us 12 days between 100 cases and 1,000 cases. In the same period in other developed countries, 3,500, 5,000, 6,000 and even 7,000 cases were reported. We have received positive results to an extent due to social distancing. We must reiterate that we can’t reduce the level of alertness.”

India has recorded more than 1100 positive cases of coronavirus with 29 people succumbing to the deadly virus. With nine deaths, Maharashtra has become the worst-hit state in India.

Earlier, Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba had denied reports that the central government was planning to extend the current lockdown even after the completion of 21 days. He had said, “I’m surprised to see such reports, there is no such plan of extending the lockdown.”

The government’s publicity department PIB too had taken to Twitter to declare the report as fake.

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