48% citizens say they have 1 or more individuals among their contacts who despite having symptoms did not get a COVID test done and instead did self-treatment/quarantine


  • • 77% citizens now have 1 or more contacts in their social network who is COVID +ve marking a drastic rise of 1000% from May when the number stood at 7%
  • • With COVID-19, people most fearful of infecting their family members or colleagues and having to be in a hospital

September 9, 2020, New Delhi: India now has close to 4.5 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 and has overtaken Brazil to become the 2nd most infected country in the world. Cities like Delhi that seemed to have gotten a grip on how to manage the infection, have again started to see a massive spike in cases with daily case load quadrupling within the last 3 weeks. Unlocking of most services is likely to only make the situation worse as India gets ready to go into festive season within a month.

After a lot of dialogue in various circles about how citizens are coping up with COVID-19, LocalCircles conducted a survey to understand the extent of the spread amongst social networks of people, psychology and fear of the virus. The survey received over 24,000 responses from people residing in 221 districts across the country.

In the first question, citizens were asked how COVID-19 has impacted their social network, which is their family, extended family, friends, colleagues, neighbours, business associates etc., including themselves. 31% said they know 6 or more individuals who had COVID-19 while 34% said they know 2-5 individuals who has COVID. 12% said they know 1 individual who has COVID while 20% said luckily no one around them has been infected so far.

77% citizens now have 1 or more contacts in their social network who has had COVID-19

77% citizens now have 1 or more contacts in their social network who has had COVID-19

This means that 77% citizens now have 1 or more contacts in their social network who had been infected with COVID-19. In a similar survey conducted in July & May this year, this number stood at 31% and 7% respectively, showing how quickly this virus is spreading in the social networks of people.

In 5 months, 1000% increase in number of people with a COVID-19 case in their social network

In 5 months, 1000% increase in number of people with a COVID-19 case in their social network

People have been reporting how many because of fear of social alienation, going to the hospital, quarantine are going into self-quarantine if they know they have come in contact with someone who is positive or have symptoms themselves. Per experts, if someone is asymptomatic or has mild symptoms and is young without any co-morbidities, this is an approved approach, the risk can be high if those infected have co-morbidities or are senior citizens.

When asked how many individuals in their social network in the last 6 months, despite having symptoms did not get a COVID test done and instead went into self-quarantine/treatment at home. 14% said more than 10 people, 10% said 6-10 people, 14% said 2-5 people and 10% said 1 individual. 52% were unsure about it.

48% citizens say they have 1 or more individuals among their contacts who despite having symptoms did not get a COVID test done and instead did self treatment/quaratine

48% citizens say they have 1 or more individuals among their contacts who despite having symptoms did not get a COVID test done and instead did self treatment/quaratine

Clearly, 48% citizens say they have 1 or more individuals among their contacts who despite having symptoms did not get a COVID test done and instead did self-treatment/quarantine. Many people are scared of getting a test done due to the fear of being admitted in a Government hospital or due to the high expenses involved in some private hospitals.

In the final question, citizens were asked what is the one thing that they are most fearful about in regards to COVID-19. 5% said social alienation, 29% said infecting their family members or colleagues, 22% said being in a hospital, 8% said their case becoming extreme, and 6% said dealing with local officials. 17% said other reasons like loss of earnings, family care, lack of information etc. were their biggest fear, while 13% said they are not fearful about anything.

With COVID-19, infecting their family members, colleagues and being in a hospital are two things highest number of Indians are fearful of

With COVID-19, infecting their family members, colleagues and being in a hospital are two things highest number of Indians are fearful of

This shows that with COVID-19, infecting their family members, colleagues and being in a hospital are two things which highest number of Indians are fearful of.

The Director of AIIMS Delhi said last week that India is now witnessing the second wave of COVID-19 infection in some regions. India has constantly been recording the highest number of cases in a single day in the world for the past couple of weeks and this number has crossed 90,000 now. With 60% of the cases being in 5 states, some citizens feel a strict lockdown in these states may be the only solution to contain the spread. The Central Government and increasingly most State Governments for economic reasons, have now adopted the approach of opening various sections of the economy and therefore Indians will likely have to learn to just live with COVID by wearing a mask, keeping a sanitizer and maintaining social distance in all they do. However, with festive season around the corner and strong sense of fatigue setting in about staying locked at home, it almost seems certain that it will get worse before it gets better.

Survey Demographics

24,000+ responses were received from consumers spread across 221 districts of India. 69% respondents were men while 31% respondents were women. 49% respondents were from tier 1, 28% from tier 2 and 23% respondents were from tier 3, 4 and rural districts. They survey was conducted via LocalCircles platform and all participants are validated citizens who had to be registered with LocalCircles to participate in this survey.

About LocalCircles

LocalCircles, India’s leading Community Social Media platform enables citizens and small businesses to escalate issues for policy and enforcement interventions and enables Government to make policies that are citizen and small business centric. LocalCircles is also India’s # 1 pollster on issues of governance, public and consumer interest. More about LocalCircles can be found on https://www.localcircles.com

Akshay Gupta - media@localcircles.com, +91-8585909866

All content in this report is a copyright of LocalCircles. Any reproduction or redistribution of the graphics or the data therein requires the LocalCircles logo to be carried along with it. In case any violation is observed LocalCircles reserves the right to take legal action.

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