The COVID-19 pandemic has had large scale ramifications for India. The strict lockdown enforced by the government to curb the spread of the virus in India precipitated a humanitarian and economic crisis. As the pandemic spreads across the country, greater challenges in terms of human and economic costs need to be tackled.
This issue of Southasiadisasters.net is titled ‘COVID-19 Impact in India’ and offers a detailed overview of the various direct and indirect impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country. India now holds the dubious distinction of having the second highest number of COVID-19 cases trailing only to the United States of America. As India settles to live with the ‘new normal’ of rising COVID-19 cases and deaths, it is important to assess its impacts to plan for better recovery.
The themes highlighted in this issue include, the impact of the pandemic on humanitarian action in India, implications for data gathering, impact on policy and regulatory mechanisms of the state; impact on environmental conservation; the impact on collaboration between the government and civil society actors. Stellar responses to the pandemic by reputed civil society actors and humanitarian agencies have also been added.
Most importantly, by taking a systems approach to analysing the impacts of the pandemic, this issue also nudges us towards thinking of comprehensive and system wide response and recovery strategies.