Lockdown Flattened India’s GDP Curve Instead Of Covid-19, Rajiv Bajaj Tells Rahul Gandhi
Rajiv Bajaj, managing director of Bajaj Auto Ltd., gestures during the St. Gallen symposium in St. Gallen, Switzerland. (Photographer: Gianluca Colla/Bloomberg)

Lockdown Flattened India’s GDP Curve Instead Of Covid-19, Rajiv Bajaj Tells Rahul Gandhi

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India implemented a “draconian” lockdown that was porous and ended up decimating the economy, Rajiv Bajaj told Rahul Gandhi in a video interaction released Thursday.

The managing director of Bajaj Auto Ltd. was in dialogue with the Congress leader, as part of the party’s series on India's Covid-19 response and the lockdown.

"You flattened the wrong curve. It is not the infection curve, it is the GDP curve. This is what we have ended (up) with—the worst of both worlds," Bajaj said.

According to him, reopening the economy will be a herculean task. He called for taking fear out of people's minds through a "very clear, aligned narrative" from none other than the prime minister.

"We are not seeing a smooth, concerted, rhythmic movement towards unlocking... We tried to implement a hard lockdown which was still porous. So, I think we have ended up with the worst of both worlds," he said.

"On one hand a porous lockdown makes sure that the virus will still exist and as you said, it is still waiting to hit you when you will unlock. So you have not solved that problem,” Bajaj told Gandhi.

Also Read: India’s Path to World-Beating Growth Looks Tough

Bajaj said that being an Asian country, he expected India to look at eastern nations than at Italy, France or Spain, which aren’t the “right benchmarks”. “Unfortunately, India not only looked to the west, it went to the wild west. I think we stayed more towards the impervious side.”

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