Reopening on shaky ground: The view from five countries
By Jeffrey Gettleman
At Nigambodh Ghat, the oldest cremation grounds in India’s capital, the bodies keep coming.
One ambulance arrives with five inside. Then another. Then another, in an endless display of death.
As the coronavirus pandemic surges in New Delhi, a public health care system that was already strained might be reaching its breaking point. People can’t get tested. They can’t find a hospital bed. The situation has become so grim that government officials have proposed commandeering some of New Delhi’s fanciest hotels to turn into hospitals.
But ready or not, much of India’s coronavirus lockdown has ended, as have those in other countries struggling to balance economic damage with coronavirus risk. In many places — India, Mexico, Russia, Iran and Pakistan, among others — leaders have come to feel they have no choice but to take the surge of cases on the chin and prioritize the economy.