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Schizophrenia of Indian Govt caused COVID crisis: Amartya Sen

Schizophrenia of Indian Govt caused COVID crisis: Amartya Sen

New Delhi: Nobel laureate and professor of economics at Harvard University Amartya Sen slammed the "confused" Indian government saying it is focused on taking credit for its actions rather than curbing the spread of COVID-19. Sen was addressing an event held by Rashtra Seva Dal on Friday.

He alleged that "schizophrenia" has led to massive troubles. Despite the better placement to fight the pandemic due to its pharma manufacturing prowess and higher immunity levels, India could not do better because of its poor response to the crisis caused by confusion in the government, Sen slammed.

"The government seemed much keener on ensuring credit for what it was doing rather than ensuring that pandemics do not spread in India. The result was a certain amount of schizophrenia," Amartya Sen said. Citing Adam Smith, the father of modern economics, he argued that if one does good things, they indeed get credit for it which could even serve as an indicator of how well one is doing.

"But to seek the credit and not the good work that generates the credit shows a level of intellectual naivete which has to be avoided. India tried to do that," Amartya Sen added. "It (government) was trying to generate the credit boasting across the world that India will save the world perhaps. And at the same time, allowing the problem to develop and have a grip over the lives of Indians across the country." He further criticized that India's existent issues, including social inequities, slowing growth and unemployment, aggravated the crisis.

"A failure of economy and failure of social cohesion was the basis of the failure of the pandemic attack as well," he said and argued for a "big constructive change" in healthcare, education, economic and social policies.

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