AGENCIES, New York: Hours after media reports surfaced about a BCG study projecting that India will likely extend the lockdown and will start lifting it as late as by end of June, the US-based consultancy firm has outrightly refuted the claim, reported PTI.
“A BCG document, illustrating one scenario of how the COVID-19 virus might progress globally, has been circulating publicly without context or authorization from BCG,” the company said in a statement. It called out the projections carried in the document, which is seemingly circulated on social media, to “vary by 100-1000x, and were built to study one range of possible outcomes”.
Media reports citing the study said that India imposing the lockdown is in line with China’s timing of the lockdown and that the number of cases of coronavirus cases in India is likely to peak in the third week of June. Moreover, the lockdown extension is because of the challenges including the preparedness of the country’s health system and effectiveness of public policy, the reports stated.
BCG, on its part, said it regularly carries out scenario planning for its clients with all kinds of business issues and that it also analyses data gathered internally and externally to formulate such scenarios. Given the high level of uncertainty around the Covid-19 impact, “BCG does not claim to provide predictions about duration of lockdown, peak of viral infections, the efficacy of health systems, or other health and societal impacts,” the consulting firm said. “This document does not represent an official BCG view nor does it purport to state how the pandemic will pan out,” BCG further stressed.
Analysts had estimated the cost of the lockdown to be 4 per cent off the GDP or $120 billion (around Rs 9 lakh crore), PTI reported. However, NITI Aayog member V K Paul said that the impact will be “much smaller and manageable” since India had announced travel restrictions and lockdown much before other countries.
On Friday night, when the report surfaced, netziens went berserk especially where the report mentioned that India might extend the lockdown till September.