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Govt should bring psychological change over Coronavirus: Rahul Gandhi

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New Delhi, May 8, 2020-

Former Congress President Rahul Gandhi on Friday said the nationwide lockdown to combat the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is not like an ‘On’ and ‘Off’ switch, adding if the government wants to end the lockdown, it needs to bring a psychological change in the mind of the people.

Speaking to reporters through video conference, Rahul Gandhi, who is also an MP from Kerala’s Wayanad, said: “Lockdown is not only switching on a key. Lockdown requires a number of things to happen, requires psychological change.”

He further said that currently, the COVID-19 disease is looked as dangerous and it is true that it is actually dangerous for elderly, diabetic people and people with ailments related to heart and lung.

“Currently, people are very scared. The government, if it wants to lift the lockdown, it needs to bring psychological change in the mind of the people and turn this fear into a sense of confidence. Otherwise, if you open up and people will go out,” he said.

He said COVID-19 disease is not dangerous for everyone.

“Coronavirus is only dangerous for one to two per cent of people while there is no life-threatening concern for 95 per cent, those who are healthy. Therefore, people should be made aware and need to overcome their inner beliefs and apprehensions related to the pandemic,” he said.

The Congress leader also stressed that it was crucial to restart the economic activities to save the nation from worsening impacts of coronavirus lockdown.

“We need to start our domestic economy soon, the more time we lose, the worse impact it will have,” he said.

“We have to protect job creators, build a wall for them to protect jobs, wages,” he said, adding that it was pivotal to provide them financial support.

This is the second interaction of the Congress leader with the media in the last one month amid the nationwide lockdown.

He has also been holding constant talks with public intellectuals on the virus pandemic and its subsequent repercussions.

The government has extended the nationwide lockdown twice in the last 45 days. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced lockdown on March 23 for 21 days. Then on April 14, he extended the lockdown for another 19 days till May 3. On May 1, the government announced the extension of lockdown by two more weeks till May 17.

On Friday, the total number of COVID-19 patients in India rose to 56,342 with 1,886 deaths across the country.  (Agency)

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