How True Is Modi's Claim That His Decisions Saved India From the Worst of COVID-19? -Vasudevan Mukunth

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published Published on Jul 28, 2020   modified Modified on Jul 29, 2020

-TheWire.in

Prime Minister Modi uses only the visible – the hardware – to claim India is 'better off because of right decisions at the right time', even though the claim isn't even true.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s claim on July 27 that India “is in a better position than other countries” even as a slew of successive lockdowns fattened the COVID-19 case-load curve instead of flattening it, reflects his tendency to make comparisons based on conveniently cherry-picked data.

Like others in government – including Vinod K. Paul, a member of the NITI Aayog, who wrote in the Indian Express on the impact of India’s lockdown on slowing the epidemic’s growth – Modi compares India’s lower infection and mortality rates with those regions where it is higher, conveniently ignoring the fact that many countries are doing better than India.

If we were to rank the performance of 213 countries and territories from worst to best on five broad measures, where coming first is to be the worst, this is how India fares:

- Total number of COVID-19 cases: 3
- Total number of COVID-19 deaths: 6
- Total number of active COVID-19 cases: 3
- Total cases per one million population: 99 (i.e. 104 countries do better)
- Total deaths per one million population: 98 (i.e. 105 countries do better, including densely populated ones like Bangladesh, Indonesia, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Japan and Vietnam)

It is clear from these rankings that Modi’s claim that India is in a “better position than other countries” is specious. As for his boast about having taken the right decisions at the right time, the disastrous effect his poorly planned and executed national lockdown has had on the lives of millions of people, not to speak of the economy and even public health, has been so well documented by experts as to not require repetition.

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TheWire.in, 28 July, 2020, https://thewire.in/government/how-true-is-modis-claim-that-his-decisions-saved-india-from-the-worst-of-covid-19


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