Letter from the Editor-in-Chief
India has suffered comparatively less in the first wave of COVID 19. This has encouraged the government and the people to declare a victory in February 2021, assuming that everything is in order. Everyday life started, people avoided masks, social distancing and the protocol of COVID 19 were diluted. Politicians became active and vigorous elections campaigns were held without any consideration of COVID 19 protocol. The government had misled priorities. Instead of vaccinating its own citizens, it preferred to export vaccination to other countries. So was the case of Oxygen Cylinders which were exported for very small revenue of less than 10 crore.
Then without any indication or warning, the second wave hit. The special characteristics of this Covid second wave is its ferocity, speed and new Mutant strains that our scientists are yet to understand completely and now we are paying a heavy price for our misspelled priorities.
At the time of writing this letter, it was observed that almost 4000 plus people are dying everyday and over 4 lakh people are infected everyday. This is an area of great concern as our population is too large compared to the USA.
The need of the hour is that we aim for extensive vaccination and myths surrounding the vaccination must be eliminated through community participation. India has a rich experience of vaccination and the war of COVID 19 can definitely be won, once we involve the community, NGOs, Gram Panchayats, Traditional heads and local bodies. In Meghalaya, the experience was very unique where the COVID first wave was handled with the help of traditional heads which yielded good results.
It has now been established that the new strain of the virus in the second wave have attacked our lungs fiercely with greater speed. In such case, oxygen is the key to saving the lives. The good news is that government has realized the need to have more oxygen supply and this is being done and met with the help of the Indian Railways and Indian Defence Force. The international community has also come forward with relief materials, oxygen cylinders and concentrators which will be of great help in tackling the situation. Unfortunately, in an hour of crisis like this, there are politicians like Imran Hussain AAP MLA and a Delhi Cabinet Minister who hoarded over 600 cylinders illegally and had been making arbitrary distribution of them. People like him must be jailed and blacklisted from politics forever. The government must keep a sincere watch on everybody who is doing black marketing of cylinders, medicines etc. India is in crisis and our people, irrespective of caste, creed and religion are suffering terribly. In such circumstances, everybody has responsibilities and they have to fulfill the same with honesty.
The government has created additional infrastructure for the second wave and they must not dismantle it, as warning for the third wave has already been given by our scientist in India. It has also been warned that the third wave will hit the children most. The bad news is that nobody knows when the third wave will hit. Hence, in circumstances like this, we have to honestly obey the COVID 19 protocols and follow the instructions given by the authorities as they are better equipped with scientific data and information.
May you all have good health.