Indian police beat motorists to enforce coronavirus lockdown

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Indian police beat motorists to enforce coronavirus lockdown

India's 1.3 billion people have been ordered to stay home in a bid to stop coronavirus spreading and overwhelming the country's healthcare system and in a bid to enforce the lockdown Indian police are violently beating people at random.

In several online videos such as this posted by The Straits Times, officers are seen driving around on motorcycles wielding sticks and beating people on the streets as they drive by. Others are stopped and hit by multiple people while still seated on their motorcycles or scooters.

The Associated Press has reported that police in New Delhi, Mumbai and the state of Kerala are striking people with sticks and batons in a bid to get them off the streets and into their homes.

The reports of police violence are widespread but some officers are adopting less extreme measures such as forcing people to bend down with their heads between their legs or do pushups.

These Indian police measures appear uncalled for and are raising eyebrows while the country's lockdown even exceeds the scope of China, where an estimated 760million people were locked down in January through Hubei province before spreading across the country. Restrictions there are now being eased.

Due to cramped living conditions, poverty, poor hygiene and a creaking healthcare system, experts are warning that up to 500million Indians could contract the virus within the next year and that could mean more than 1million deaths in the next 12 months. 

The national lockdown went into effect on March 25th and will last for 21 days.

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