Odd-even not scientific method to start unlocking in Delhi, says expert


Express News Service

NEW DELHI: Delhi on Monday opened up malls, market complexes, standalone shops, and neighbourhood shops in an odd-even manner as announced by CM Arvind Kejriwal.

Public health experts, however, are not on the same page on the decision of opening markets with partial capacity.

Dr Chandrakant Lahariya, epidemiologist and author of the book ‘Till We Win: India’s Fight against the COVID-19 Pandemic’, says odd-even is not a good approach to open up restrictions. 

“The odd-even is a simple approach with 50 per cent chances of being effective. New scientific theories and studies have proved that the virus travels through the air. There are high chances of transmission inside closed spaces and shops. The malls should have been opened later as well as facilities with air-conditioned setting,” Dr Lahariya says.

He believes that outdoor markets should have been opened first and observed to see how people behave and then further decisions should have been taken.

Markets and malls have been allowed to open on an “odd-even” basis, while standalone shops can open on all days.

The Delhi Metro will also resume services with 50% capacity.

“Delhi has been noted to be carrying the Delta variant which is strong, powerful and more harmful. Hence, metro services also shouldn’t have started off. Some public health measures also need to be taken and more strictness has to be applied,” he notes, adding odd-even creates more confusion.

“This is a very mathematical calculation and not scientific. Mumbai has a more detailed and well-planned approach towards unlocking,” he says.

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