New Delhi, March 29— Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Sunday wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi making four key suggestions in regard with the government’s fight against Coronavirus or COVID-19 pandemic in the country.
While conveying his solidarity along with that of millions of Congress party workers at this time of immense humanitarian crisis, he said his party workers are “doing our utmost to cooperate with the steps the government is taking to fight the Coronavirus outbreak in India.”
As the country is under lockdown for three weeks (since March 24), Rahul urged the PM “to seriously consider the potentially devastating impact of a nationwide lockdown would have on our people, our society and our economy.”
In the wake of the exodus of thousands of workers from Delhi in the last three days, Rahul said: “India is different from other countries who are following a total lockdown strategy. Th number of poor people in India who are dependent on a daily income is simply too large for us to unilaterally shut down all economic activity. The consequences of a complete economic shut down will disastrously amplify the death toll arising from the COVID-19 virus.”
“Thousands of migrant workers have been forced to leave their rented homes as they are unable to pay rent. It is important that the government intervenes and provides them money for their rent immediately,” he demanded.
Seven Key Suggestions from Rahul Gandhi:
In his three-page letter, the Congress leader and Lok Sabha MP has made some suggestions to the government:
— Protect and isolate the elderly and vulnerable from the virus and clearly and strongly communicate to the young the dangers of their proximity to older people
— Immediately strengthen the social safety net and use every public resource to support and shelter the working poor
— Speedy delivery of the financial package announced by the government
— Start setting up hospitals and manufacturing necessary equipment like ventilators
— Dramatically increase the number of tests to get an accurate picture of the virus’s spread in order to contain it
— Give shelter to migrating workers and inject money directly into their bank accounts to help them survive these arduous next few months
— Set up defensive wall around key financial and strategic institutions to protect them from the shock wave that is bound to come as the true impact of the virus and our economic shutdown hits us a few weeks from now