Majority believe govt on right track to control Covid pandemic: Survey

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Lucknow: Despite the country facing a steep rise in COVID-19 cases in July, majority of the people maintain that the government was on the right track to control the pandemic.
According to a survey, 1 in every three citizens say they have at least one COVID-19 positive case in their social network while there is 350 per cent increase in people who have at least one such case in their circle. In May, only 7 per cent had a positive case in their social network.
It further says 51 per cent people in the country believe that government is on the right track as far as handling of containment of COVID-19 is concerned.
Around 43 per cent citizens believe that India will cross at least 8 million COVID-19 cases by the end of this year.
LocalCircles, a leading Community Social Media platform, in its latest report released on Thursday, says that they conducted a survey to get citizen pulse on the issue of extent of spread of COVID-19 in India, how do people see it spreading further and received over 35,000 responses from 269 districts of the country.
Of the total votes, 6340 were from Uttar Pradesh alone.
The survey says 31 per cent citizens say that they have at least 1 COVID-19 positive case in their social network i.e. family, extended family, friends, colleagues, neighbours, etc. This number has seen a 350 per cent increase in the last 2 months and stood at a meagre 7 per cent in May 2020.
Asked if they believe that the country is on the right track as far as handling of containment of COVID-19 is concerned, only 51 per cent answered in a affirmative while 39 per cent answered in a negative.
In the LocalCircles survey in May, 90 per cent citizens had approved Government’s handling of COVID-19.
Given the high number of cases being detected every day in various parts of the country, there has been a drastic decline in the citizen approval rating– from 90 per cent to 51 per cent – of how the Indian Government has handled the pandemic.
Some of the citizens among the 39 per cent who believe that India isn’t on the right track as far as containment of COVID-19 goes highlighted their reasoning for the belief. A sizable set of people believe that India should have implemented stringent lockdown in the high virus load districts for much longer periods.
According to many of them, opening or markets and businesses while footfalls are 20-30 per cent of pre COVID-19 isn’t going to help the small business owner and it will worsen the spread. Some small businesses feel that they will not be able to sustain in this mode where operating costs are higher than profits for more than 6 month and may have to fold up.
According to them, it would have been much better, had the Central or State Government implemented a strict lockdown in these high load districts and only opened up businesses and markets when the case load declined considerably. Most of the large cities of India come in the high virus load category.
In the LocalCircles survey conducted in earlier, 69 per cent citizens indicated that a complete one-month lockdown must be implemented in such high load districts and that weekend lockdowns weren’t effective.
Asked how the country can significantly reduce its cases, ten per cent said it could be done through strict localised lockdowns while 19 per cent said it could be done through extensive tracking and testing. A total of 58 per cent said both of these will have to be done together while 11 per cent feel the Government cannot do anything to significantly reduce the number of cases.
In the final poll, citizens were asked with the current containment, where do they expect India to be by December 31, 2020. 17 per cent in response said they believe there will be 2-4 million cases, 19 per cent said there could be 4-8 million cases, 27 per cent said there could be 8-12 million cases, while 16 per cent said there could be over 12 million cases in India by December 31, 2020.