Amid surging coronavirus cases in India, finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman made it clear that the government would not go for lockdowns in a big way and only resort to local containment. In a virtual meeting with World Bank Group President David Malpass, Sitharaman appreciated the initiatives of the international financial institution to increase the lending space for India to enhance availability of finance for development.
“Even with the second wave, we are very clear that we are not going in for lockdowns in a big way. We don’t want to totally arrest the economy. The local level isolation of patients, or households which have people in quarantines are the methods through which the second wave will be handled. There shall not be lockdown,” Sitharaman said.
According to a World Bank statement, Malpass and the finance minister discussed the importance of the partnership between the Group and India, including recent programmes in civil service and financial sector reform, water resource management and health. They discussed India’s Covid-19 response as well as the country's large domestic vaccine production capabilities, the statement said.