DailyPost 1655

All gains this country made last year were because of early lockdown. We did not end up in a furnace as it all started. The horrifying stories of Italy, Western Europe and New York could send chills down anybody’s spine. We created that elbow space which we could use for quite some time. While the suddenness of the decision can for long be debated, on the positive side it sent the message loud and clear that the government meant business and business meant to remain locked down. The pictures and videos of towns and cities and even the mountains and rivers looked so pristine, as if God had revisited the world to clean it by his own hands. One had already believed and it seemed that India for the first time in known history had picked up discipline.

But as the country started to open so did people, with every stage throwing the caution, stage by stage, to the winds. The results were out and as it now, Maharashtra then also was leading the way. Whether it was quirk of fate or irresponsible behavior can be a debate for yet another day, the reality check in hindsight gave us the wisdom, that it spreads only if put COVID-19 behavior is put to shreds.  Kerala, which was the leading light slipped into ignominy. The Governments by their laxity added to the fun and frolic of the insane population. Exactly same thing had happened a century earlier at the time of the Spanish flu – a second deadly wave. Human DNA has remained intact need not be proven again.

The US could never recover all throughout, some statistical relief here and there, that is all. UK broke through the seams around 22nd Dec 2020 and given the wildfire spread, went in for a total crackdown on the pandemic, that is a lockdown. And it paid well, today it is operating at round 2500 cases. Others who wavered had  to face the problem in a much worse way. The moral of the story is that you have to face it. It cannot be wished away. All the small measures,  is like trying to navigate in the den of lions does not pay off. COVID-19 cannot be handled while having the calendar is full of festivals, celebrations, bars, pubs, malls and above all elections.

Lockdown is not a bad word, the purpose and the timing has to be crystal clear. Democratic machinations in such decision making can only be a failure, it’s being proven all across the country. What was done in UK in its recent long lockdown? The vaccination drive. Supported by its people, the govt did the best it could. The results are there to see. We have reached where we have, this crisis cannot be wished it has to take head on. Lockdown is the only answer, wherever the situation has gone out of control. The diluted format, using different terminologies for ushering  lockdown has its own serious limitations. Use this time for only vaccination, strategized on instant need, based on geography.  This can bring things under control.


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