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Sentiment Analysis in Response to Major Government Announcements During the Coronavirus Outbreak in India

Journal: International Journal of Mechanical and Production Engineering Research and Development (IJMPERD ) (Vol.10, No. 3)

Publication Date:

Authors : ;

Page : 5789-5800

Keywords : Coronavirus; Sentiment Analysis; Text Mining; Government of India; Sentiment Lexicon; Social Media; News Sentiment & Government Announcements;

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The novel coronavirus is a name given to “Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus” (SARS CoV-2) which originated in the Wuhan market of China in December 2019 and hence named as COVID-19. The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared it as a pandemic on 11th March, 2020 after studying its highly contagious nature. The most common symptoms of the coronavirus disease include fever, dry cough and tiredness [1]. Since then, the effects of the virus have spread in an exponential way across the world causing mass deaths and forcing governments to impose nationwide lockdowns to reduce the spread of the virus. India is no exception to this as it has also suffered the effects of this pandemic. From the start of March, India had been on high alert and on 22nd March, the country observed a twelvehour Janata Curfew and a full nationwide lockdown from 24th March, 2020 onwards [2]. The lockdown was extended twice afterwards until Unlock 1.0 was announced to come into effect from 8th June 2020 which allowed selected business sectors to resume operations in a phased manner as per containment zones. Despite the lockdown and the government's efforts to curb the spread of the virus, the country has been experiencing a rapid growth in the total number of cases from its inception and is now in the third place as per number of cases [3] during the time of this research. The lockdown restrictions and the rising numbers have sparked widespread concerns throughout the country, and most of it was evident from the posts in social media and the online news blogs. During the lockdown, the Indian government also made several key announcements to improve the economic activity of the country amid the pandemic with the aim to assist the general public and sustaining businesses. This study records the trend in sentiment scores and emotion scores over a 100-day period from March 2020 to June 2020 in response to various government announcements and to the pandemic in general. The objective of this study is to detect any substantial change in the sentiments of the general public and the Indian media when the government makes major announcements. This will help in understanding whether the key government announcements have a positive or a negative impact on the citizens of the country and the media, and whether the sentiment score changes over time as the total number of cases are increasing.

Last modified: 2020-12-28 18:52:45