Coronavirus Returns After Relaxation in Lockdown Restrictions

Coronavirus in China. Photo: NHC
Coronavirus in China. Photo: NHC

Coronavirus Returns After Relaxation in Lockdown Restrictions

Many areas across the world that had relaxed lockdown restrictions are experiencing a surge in the number of Covid infections forcing the governments to again issue stay-at-home orders for the citizens.

In the U.S., for example, new hotspots in rural as well as urban areas are emerging in those states where governors refused to ask people to stay at home.

According to reports, coronavirus is spreading relentlessly in Republican heartlands where the local administrations followed President Trump’s reckless advice to reopen the businesses.

Despite warnings from health experts about the increased risks of reopening at this stage when the virus is spreading, Trump is asking different states to resume their work.

Although Trump and some U.S. states are claiming that the intensity of virus is reducing, these are unfounded claims because without the adequate number of tests on a large population, the effect of infection cannot be measured.

According to an NBC News report of May 12, the 10 top areas recorded surges of 72.4 percent or greater over a seven-day period compared to the previous week. They include Nashville, Tennessee; Des Moines, Iowa; Amarillo, Texas; and — atop the list, with a 650 percent increase — Central City, Kentucky.

Similarly, new Covid infections are being seen in China and South Korea where the local authorities had relaxed lockdown restrictions. NBC News reports that lockdowns were reimposed there on May 11 after a spike in new coronavirus infections.

The report adds that at least 15 cases of the virus have been confirmed in Shulan, China, prompting officials to quarantine 290 people, enforce martial law, and lock down the northeastern city.

The Jilin provincial government declared the city at high risk for the spread of the epidemic on May 10. Trains and vehicles, except those used by emergency rescuers, have been barred from entering the city and residents are advised again to stay at home.

Moreover, the schools which were opened during lockdown relaxations have been closed again, besides imposing strict restrictions on other types of public movement.

Meanwhile, South Korea – where social-distancing requirements were eased in the beginning of May – recorded a spike in cases particularly in Seoul.

These cases show that it will be suicidal for all those countries that are planning to lift the coronavirus lockdown restrictions.

It is being observed that authoritarian leaders are in favor of restarting the economic activity because coronavirus has deprived them of their power to control the commoners. Now, the dictators have been relegated to mere figurehead roles while the healthcare professionals are calling the shots.

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Rakesh Raman