So, where do I start? The first covid case in India was reported in January and by then we had at least 100 countries to show us what to do, what not to do and when to. The health ministry and the visionary Prime Minister were busy buying MLAs and gathering people for Trump’s event.
Even when the world was crumbling in crisis, officials here said: “Covid is not a health emergency”. With things going out of hand in March and in a rush to act, we have witnessed the most stringent lockdown in the world without calculating the risks.
We were at 300 cases and less than 30 deaths. Lockdown during a pandemic does not magically wipe off the virus; it’s imposed to slow down the curve and, hence, buy time to ramp up the infrastructure for what’s to come. The country was generous and donated crores to the PM cares fund and, yet, we don’t know where the money has been spent.
The overnight decision of lockdown has hit the middle class and poorest of the poor hard, with irreversible impacts. More than 300 migrant workers have reportedly died due to starvation, exhaustion and accidents. Amid the hardships, the government even failed to pay the train fares for migrants and caused additional suffering by misrouting the trains.
Health care workers were being denied residence and had to work with compromised safety, putting themselves at risk. The Prime Minister, being blind and deaf, asked the nation to light diyas and bang thalis, which ridiculed the plight of the common citizen of this country.
With the economy crunching, the lockdowns were lifted at the time when they were most needed, causing a burden on the health care system. India is testing abnormally low even for its own standards and capacity. The high positivity rate for a low number of tests is alarming, and sources say the reported cases and deaths are far less than the actual ones.
Hospitals are already out of beds and the workers are exhausted. To make things worse, the ICMR sidelines scientific procedures and sees the vaccine announcement as content for the Prime Minister’s 15th August speech. The scientific reputation of India is at stake.
In other news, the Ministry of Environment in India amends the EIA to dilute the already incapacitated laws. The amendment makes it easier for corporations to exploit the resources of this country. It has cut down the public hearing period, thus, reducing the role of stakeholders. Each clause is a contradiction to what an EIA should be. The impacts of this will be catastrophic to the people and ecology of the country.
Talking of foreign relations, neighbouring countries are claiming our lands. Soldiers are dying. The chest-thumping patriots of this country are surprisingly silent. They went on to praise the Prime Minister and his failed leadership. I fail to understand what they love about this country. Is it the diversity of people, flora and fauna, the rivers and mountains, the fertile soils and farms? Or is it only about Modi and the ideology of his party? The answer is evident, and that tells you who the anti-nationals are.