International medical journal The Lancet commenting on the current COVID-19 sitatuion of India has said that the country has "squandered" its early successes in controlling the pandemic outbreak and Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government could preside over "a self-inflicted national catastrophe". Criticising the government's handling of the coronavirus pandemic, Lancet said that the success of India overcoming the crisis will depend on PM Modi's administration "owning up to its mistakes".
"India squandered its early successes in controlling COVID-19. Until April, the government's COVID-19 taskforce had not met in months. The consequences of that decision are clear before us, and India must now restructure its response while the crisis rages," the Lancet said in it's editorial.
"The success of that effort will depend on the government owning up to its mistakes, providing responsible leadership and transparency, and implementing a public health response that has science at its heart," it added.
It widely criticised the government of India for giving out the impression that India had beaten COVID-19 after several months of low case counts, despite repeated warnings of the dangers of a second wave.
"Despite warnings about the risks of super-spreader events, the government allowed religious festivals to go ahead, drawing millions of people from around the country, along with huge political rallies-conspicuous for their lack of COVID-19 mitigation measures," Lancet said.
At times, Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government has seemed more intent on removing criticism on Twitter than trying to control the pandemic," Lancet notified.
According to the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, India will see a staggering 1 million deaths from COVID-19 by Aug 1. "If that outcome were to happen, Modi's government would be responsible for presiding over a self-inflicted national catastrophe," the institue added.
Meanwhile, India continued to record more than four lakh COVID-19 cases per day, even as the death toll rose to an all time high of more than 4,000. This incidentally is the first time that the single day toll has crossed the four thousand mark. While the case tally was marginally lower than the record-setting previous day, it is still among the highest observed in the world.