New Delhi [India], May 22 (ANI): The growth rate of COVID-19 cases has seen a steady fall from April 3 as the lockdown was able to put a brake on the spread of the coronavirus in the country, said Dr VK Paul, Chairman, Empowered Group 1, on Friday.
"The growth rate of coronavirus cases has witnessed a steady fall from April 3, as the lockdown was able to put a brake on the speed of growth. The number of cases today would have been much higher had lockdown not been implemented," said Dr Paul at a joint press briefing here.
The Central government has formed the Empowered Group 1 for coordinating medical emergency management plan in view of coronavirus pandemic.
He further said the lockdown was timely, graded, proactive and pre-emptive public health measure to fight the coronavirus pandemic. "It has been a part and parcel of our overall strategy," he said.
"Like the number of cases, the growth rate of the number of COVID-19 deaths too has fallen significantly due to lockdown, marking a notable difference between pre-lockdown and post-lockdown situations," he said.
Talking about the effect of lockdown, the Empowered Group 1 chairman said: "The confinement of COVID-19 to certain areas has been due to actions taken during the lockdown. It enabled us to be more prepared for the future."
He said that due to the lockdown, 80 per cent of active cases are in just five States and more than 60 per cent cases are in just five cities.
"This is no small achievement. It also gives us the confidence to open up other areas. Despite being such a large nation, due to lockdown, the coronavirus outbreak has remained confined to limited areas," he said.
According to Dr Paul, the lockdown has saved a lot of lives as it averted a large number of coronavirus cases that otherwise would have happened and "we are confident that we are on the right track."
A total of 1,18,447 confirmed cases of COVID-19 have been reported in India so far, out of which 48,534 persons have recovered or migrated, said the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on Friday.
There are 66,330 active cases of COVID-19 in the country at present. 3,583 people have lost their lives due to the coronavirus in the country to date. (ANI)