India Today|May 17, 2021
M.G. Arun

With the number of Covid-19 infections surging India recorded 368,147 new cases and 3,417 deaths on May 3, according to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare several states have imposed strict restrictions on public movement and variously calibrated lockdowns. Judging from public statements by heads of industry bodies, India Inc. appears to be on board with these steps for instance, on May 2, Uday Kotak, MD and CEO of Kotak Mahindra Bank and president CII (Confederation of Indian Industry), called for “the strongest national steps including curtailing economic activity to reduce suffering”. Sanjiv Mehta, chairman of FMCG giant Hindustan Unilever, has called for micro-containment centres to check the spread of the virus. On May 2, the Supreme Court also urged the Central and state governments to “consider imposing a lockdown to curb [the second wave of the virus]” while ensuring that marginalised communities do not suffer. However, in a televised address on April 20, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had said that lockdowns should be a last resort while stressing the need for restrictions in Covid hotspots.

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