Shanghai Lockdown: Is China’s ‘Zero COVID’ strategy beginning to backfire? | In Focus podcast

At a time when most parts of the world are easing COVID restrictions and even mask mandates, Shanghai is in the middle of a brutal lockdown. There have been reports of a sharp spike in the number of cases, although reported deaths are and restricted to the very old. Shanghai’s 25 million residents seem to be increasingly fed up with the government’s ‘Zero COVID’ policy, which has caused supply chain bottle necks resulting in shortages of food and other essentials, and denial of medical care for patients with non-COVID illnesses. There have also been reports of little children getting separated from parents forcibly sent away to quarantine shelters.

Until this March, there was a general sense that China had managed the pandemic way better than the West, especially when viewed in terms of the total case load and mortality numbers. So how did thing things get out of hand all of a sudden? Is it a case of the ‘Zero COVID’ strategy backfiring? Is it the Omicron variant? Given that President Xi Jinping has taken personal ownership of the ‘Zero COVID’ strategy, is China likely to make a course correction in view of the economic fallout and public disenchantment with the stringent lockdown measures?

Guest: Ananth Krishnan, China Correspondent, The Hindu

Host: G. Sampath, Social Affairs Editor, The Hindu

Edited by Ranjani Srinivasan

Our code of editorial values

Printable version | Apr 21, 2022 6:16:41 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/podcast/shanghai-lockdown-is-chinas-zero-covid-strategy-beginning-to-backfire-in-focus-podcast/article65341610.ece