Lockdown was necessary, Covid-19 cases were brought under control: Arvind Kejriwal at HTLS 2020

Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal said on Friday lockdown imposed in March to contain the spread of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) helped his government prepare the health infrastructure to deal with the pandemic. “Lockdown was necessary. We did not have enough information and resources to handle the pandemic. We got to prepare the infrastructure during that period,” he said during the 18th edition of the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit.

Kejriwal said lockdowns delay the number of Covid-19 cases but does not stop them entirely. “Every government needs to assess its health infrastructure before imposing a lockdown,” he added.

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Kejriwal also said that Delhi’s health infrastructure didn’t collapse even during the peak of the coronavirus pandemic unlike other cities like New York. “We advised home-isolation for the infected and it helped us reduce burden on our healthcare system,” Kejriwal said during the conversation with HT’s executive editor Kunal Pradhan on Day Two of HLTS 2020.

Delhi is in the grip of a third wave of infections and there are over 510,600 Covid-19 cases and death toll is at more than 8,000, according to data from the government’s daily health bulletin.

Also read | Health infrastructure didn’t collapse during Covid-19 peak, says Kejriwal

Randeep Guleria, the director of All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Ashish K Jha, dean of Brown University’s School of Public Health, and Serum Institute of India’s Adar Poonawalla were among the speakers on Day One at the 18th edition of the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit. On Day Two, former Indian cricket captain Kapil Dev was in conversation with sports writer and journalist Ayaz Memon.

The theme of this year’s HTLS, being held virtually, is ‘Defining a New Era’ as the world grapples with the coronavirus pandemic. The live discussions with leaders across sectors will be spread over four weeks and will be held every Thursday and Friday.

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