Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday warned that economic devastation will hit India like a tsunami in the next six months and that people will go through “unimaginable pain” if the government does not step up its efforts to fight the coronavirus pandemic, ANI reported.
“The Indian economy is going to be devastated,” Gandhi told reporters in Delhi. Alluding to the destruction caused by the tsunami in Andaman and Nicobar Islands in 2004, he said, “You have no idea of the painful thing the country has suffered and it is coming. It is like a tsunami is coming.”
“India should be preparing itself not just for COVID-19 but for the economic devastation that’s coming,” the Congress leader added. “I am sorry to say this but our people are going to go through unimaginable pain in the next six months.”
Gandhi alleged that the government was unprepared to meet the challenges. “I have been warning the government. They are fooling around... they are not clear about what to do,” he said.
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Last week, Gandhi accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of “sleeping at the wheel” and said his government was mismanaging the economy and the coronavirus pandemic.
India reported its third death from coronavirus on Tuesday, a 64-year-old man from Mumbai. There are 125 positive cases in the country. With 39 cases, Maharashtra is the worst-hit state. Several states have virtually shut down in an effort to contain the rapidly-spreading disease. Educational institutions, and public spaces such as malls, gyms and swimming pools have been closed till the end of March.
On Monday, India prohibited entry to travellers from all 27 European Union nations, all four European Free Trade Association member nations, the United Kingdom and Turkey between March 18 and March 31.
The novel coronavirus has infected 1,82,424 people, and killed more than 7,000 worldwide, according to the John Hopkins University in the United States, which is tracking the cases in real time.