TODAY -

Covid battle: Heed local experts, not central politician
- Imphal Times Editorial :: October 04 2020 -



With daily infection cases surging up towards the 300 mark, the Covid 19 pandemic is entering another milestone in the state of Manipur.

The consistent and relentless surge of the scourge has been going on unabated, and things look set to continue for the foreseeable future.

While things are seemingly going back to the normal way of life, there still remains the undercurrent of uncertainty and apprehension, but these reservations and inhibitions are being overwhelmed by the need for a majority of the public to get on with life and continue with their professions and activities which sustains and feeds them.

Meanwhile, a group of renowned medical experts have publicly expressed their concerns on the manner in which the state government is handling the present pandemic.

They have also expressed their learned views and opinions on the existence of community transmission in the state, and despite the statements from the experts, the inability or rather the failure of the state government to take any appropriate and befitting measures to counter the rising threat is unfortunate and reeks of gross negligence and disregard for public safety.

Even though on the face of it, the activities being carried out by the state authorities indicates an ongoing effort to combat the pandemic, there are no significant changes in the protocols or government approach ever since the lockdown began more than six months ago.

Contact tracing which is considered to be of vital importance in segregating and keeping the rate of infection down, is abysmally ineffective and evidently perfunctory.

If the state government can display even half the level of alacrity and urgency towards dealing with the increasing the Covid 19 situation in the state as it has done during the buildup to the cabinet reshuffle, things are sure to change for the better.

The frenzied trips to the national capital as if going for marketing errands to the local market, the imploring knocks on the corridors of power at the centre, the tussle outside the gates for appointments all showed that regardless of the intents for their actions, the elected leaders of the state has what it takes to make things happen when they are desperate enough- read their own political fate and positions on the line- the only catch, one which is making all the differences for all the wrong reasons is that their instincts for survival has been focused more on their political lives rather than their own biological ones.

Perhaps the easiest way to start a sustained and aggressive fight against the pandemic would be to carry out a more intensive contact tracing, containment and above all, monitoring work over and above the present enforcement of SOPs and social distancing norms.

Making Covid 19 tests free, or at least charging a nominal amount including for the private clinics and laboratories could also make the public to come forward for testing.

The state government should pull up its socks and do what is required of it to make sure that the pandemic is controlled and the uncertainty in the minds of the public is eased without waiting for the “blessings’ or instructions from the centre.

If what it takes is yet another trip to the national capital, the public is more than ready and willing to provide a warm sendoff.

We can deliberate on sending our children back to school then and only then.



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