Government cites various statistical models, says averted between 1.4 million-2.9 million cases due to lockdown

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New Delhi [India], May 22 (ANI): India has averted between 1.4 million-2.9 million COVID-19 cases on average due to lockdown, the government said on Friday citing various estimates based on statistical models. Pravin Srivastava, Secretary, Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation, said that Boston consulting group (BSG) estimated that 36 lakh-70 lakh cases were averted and 1.2 lakh-2.1 lakh lives saved due to lockdown "According to the estimate by the Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI), nearly 78,000 deaths were averted due to lockdown. The third estimation by two independent economists states that 23 lakh cases and 68,000 deaths were averted. According to some independent experts, over 15 lakh cases and nearly 51,000 deaths have been averted," Srivastava said at a press briefing on the COVID-19 situation. "Our ministry has worked with the Indian Statistical Institute. We observed that we have averted 20 lakh cases and 54,000 deaths were averted. By and large, we have found that we have averted 14 lakh to 29 lakh cases and deaths averted can vary from 37,000-78,000," Srivastava said. The slide shown by Srivastava said that the estimate is for the impact of lockdown (1.0 and 2.0) on COVID-19 outbreak. He said they have found that most cases and deaths that were averted are well within a reasonable estimate of different models by independent researchers. "We have full confidence that the modeling has shown you how many cases and deaths could have happened if there was no lockdown." Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the nationwide lockdown on March 25. The fourth phase of lockdown will continue till May 31 and some relaxations have been given by the government. VK Paul, Chairman of Empowered Group 1, said that around 80 per cent of active COVID-19 cases are in five states. "Current active COVID19 cases (as of May 21) are concentrated in a few states and cities/districts; around 80 per cent in 5 states, over 60 per cent in 5 cities, over 90 per cent in 10 states and over 70 per cent in 10 cities," he said. Paul said that the growth rate of COVID-19 cases has witnessed a steady fall from April 3, 2020 when 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. 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. (ANI)