They’ve been disproportionately affected by job losses, and now new jobs may first go to men.
- 100 Public Health
- 80.1 Financial
- 60 Fact-Based
India scores just above the median, a large drop-off in recent months, keyed by substantial weakening of restrictions and worsening financial support.
India’s weak healthcare system, poor population health, very low number of hospital beds, and low GDP-per-capita resulted in it being vulnerable to the pandemic.
- Debt/GDP ratio 68.1%
- GDP/capita $9,027
- Gini coefficient (out of 100) 37.8
- Infant mortality rate (out of 1,000 live births) 30
- Healthcare access score (out of 100) 44.8
- Hospital beds/1,000 People 4.4
Government ResponseSelect a data point for more information
(Data points represent policy level as of Jan 1.)
Public Health Directives
India scores highly in this category, with relatively strong school and public restrictions countering limited testing and low emergency healthcare spending.
- Stay at home order 2
- Public gathering restrictions 4
- School closings 3
- Public event cancellations 2
- Testing policy 2
- Emergency healthcare investments/capita $0.92
- Travel restrictions 3
- Tests/1,000 people 125.4
- Contact tracing 2
India’s relatively strong score is driven by its wide-ranging debt forbearance and relief, but its stimulus is fairly small, and its income support is around the median for workers, many of whom are employed in the informal sector or in migrant work.
- Financial stimulus as share of GDP 7%
- Income support 0
- Debt forebearance 2
Across the country, Indian journalists have been arrested for sedition or spreading "fake news" in response to their reporting on the state’s handling of COVID-19.
- Reliance on science/fact based information 0
- Press freedom 2
COVID-19 Status as of Jan 1
India has performed consistently strongly in this category across all subcategories, particularly with its low death rate; lockdown extensions helped to bring spiking case rates under control.
- Total deaths 148,994
- Death rate per 100K 108
- Total cases 10,286,709
- Cases per 100K 7,454
- Percent of positive tests 1.7
- Change in positivity rates -5.7
|1||Apr 29||Government permits stranded people to travel within the country||1.21|
|2||Jun 08||Restaurants, offices, malls, and places of worship reopen||6.99|
|3||Sep 07||Metro rail trains resume||61.00|
|4||Sep 21||Taj Mahal reopens, as do schools in eight states, public gatherings allowed up to 100 people||65.47|
|5||Oct 15||Cinemas allowed to open with 50 percent capacity, entertainment parks open, congregations allowed up to 200 people||48.07|
|6||Oct 27||Extended localized lockdowns||35.12|
- Local Indian vaccine trial nearing end: Bharat Biotech, an Indian pharmaceutical company, may complete trials of a potential vaccine by January 2021, raising hopes for a rapid rollout in the country. Read More
- India's toxic air pollution poses risks for COVID-19 patients: India's air pollution, which usually spikes in the fall, could create additional challenges for COVID-19 patients whose breathing capacity is already weakened. Read More
- Pandemic shrinks India's economy: India, one of the world's fastest-growing economies, has now become one of the fastest-shrinking ones due to the pandemic by impacting domestic spending, with two consecutive quarters of the economy contracting for the first time in two decades. Read More
- India may begin producing Russia's COVID-19 vaccine: President Vladimir Putin said India and China might both begin producing Russia's Sputnik V vaccine against COVID-19 soon. Read More
- Cases rise, restrictions lighten: Despite having more than 5.4 million COVID cases, lockdown fatigue has swept through India, and the government has lightened restrictions on trains, flights, markets, restaurants, and tourist destinations. Read More
- Middle class devastated by COVID-19: The engine of India's economy, its middle-class consumer base, was already faltering before COVID-19, and now consumption is down as much as 55 percent, raising long-term concerns about India's economy and poverty in the country. Read More
- Cases skyrocket, government quiets criticism: India had more new COVID-19 cases in August than any other country; data suggests there may be 20 times as many cases as are being reported, and the government appears to be focusing on public relations and obfuscating the actual impact of the coronavirus. Read More
Compared with the Nearest Countries in the Index
Per 1M 4,782
China’s aggressive lockdowns played a key role in controlling case and death rates. However, its low score is driven by multiple factors, including the country’s minimal financial response and lack of press freedom and fact-based communications. China’s failure to report testing obscures understanding of actual COVID-19 dynamics within the country.
Per 1M 55,337
Iran has a very weak policy score, due largely to very weak public health policy, driven by a severe lack of testing and substantial misinformation and press limitations by the national authorities.
Per 1M 56,798
Russia has a relatively weak score, with strong public health policy undone by weak financial support, limitations on press freedom, and spread of misinformation about the pandemic.
Further Reading From Foreign Policy
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Statistics and government response factors available on each country profile include:
- Debt to GDP ratio
- Infant mortality rates
- Hospital beds per 1,000 people
- Gini coefficients measuring inequality
- Health access and quality
COVID-19 Public Health Directives:
- Stay-at home orders
- School-closing policy
- Public-gathering restrictions
- Cancellation of public events
- Testing policy and rates per 1,000 people
- Emergency healthcare spending per capita
- Travel restrictions
- Contact tracing
COVID-19 Financial Response:
- Stimulus package as a share of GDP
- Income support
- Instances of misinformation by leadership
- Limitations on press freedom, censorship
Current/Historic In-Country COVID-19 Status:
- Death rates per 1 million
- Case rates per 1 million