Was health official Lav Agarwal right in saying India’s Covid-19 peak may never come? - ALL Jobs News

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Monday, 14 September 2020

Was health official Lav Agarwal right in saying India’s Covid-19 peak may never come?

Lav Agarwal, the joint secretary in the Union health ministry assigned to brief the media during the early days of the pandemic, had on several occasions remarked that India’s peak in terms of daily cases “may never come”.

At the time, it seemed like a baffling claim. The conventional epidemiological understanding is that the curve of a pandemic is usually symmetric: a sharp surge of cases is followed by a peak or a plateau after which news cases start declining.

But six months into the pandemic in India, Agarwal’s words seem to have been curiously prophetic – India’s Covid-19 graph continues to shoot up with no peak or plateau in sight.

This is almost singularly unique. Most countries have seen at least one peak or plateau even as some have seen new infections rise again. (India’s graph did momentarily slow down in mid-August raising some hope, but it did not sustain).

What explains this?

India, after all, clamped down one of the world’s harshest and longest lockdowns to contain the spread of the virus.

Six months after the lockdown started, why is the graph still rising?

Multiple pandemics

Observers say the explanation is rather simple: India’s size. This has meant that different places are at different stages of the pandemic.

“While in some of...

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from Scroll.in https://scroll.in/article/972767/was-health-official-lav-agarwal-right-in-saying-indias-covid-19-peak-may-never-come?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=public
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