DailyPost 1682

Person to person transmission will keep on happening till the time person to person contact is there. The more unregulated the person the person contacts, there is more likelihood of transmission. The virulence of the present mutants and consequent Pandemic Purge has all been recorded and is public knowledge. Having firmly decided against lockdowns and going in for a containment strategy has been the mantra, where have we landed with the strategy. In administration we don’t foreclose any option. Every strategy would be successful till time you have the ability to make it happen. To make it happen you should have the capability to enforce it till the last mile, very effectively. Meetings, government orders, red alerts, warning, threatening et al where the tools of the 20th century administration, those don’t deliver any more.

The uniformity of the Indian administration is not by way of its effectiveness but mainly the official positions, hierarchy, perks and privileges and also not the capability to either plan, organize resources, execute and deliver. Operations have always been a bottleneck and that is how in administration, unlike management, we don’t even use that word, of late at least we are hearing of supply chains. Time has always been bountiful, so you could decide whenever you felt like, incorporating whims and fancies of all those who mattered. Turn around time and data driven administration are still in the realm of a mirage. What quality is delivered behind the numbers is a bigger question mark.

If the governments have absolutely no idea,  as to what quantum of crisis they can handle in an unfolding tragedy, then who would provide them both the data and also the parameters. And that too a second time. The livelihood story happens because our famed welfare state  governance which covers every citizen from free ration to medical insurance melts, with the first sunrays. Lockdown was stigmatized by the way it was administered. You can use it any number of times, if the situation so demands. Countries have successfully done so. The situation is so grim because supposedly the other well thought out strategies have failed. Lockdown would relieve the whole government machinery only for fire fighting.

With the government’s lockdown phobia, night curfew, weekend curfews, flimsy restrictions, closures were announced as it were some discount sale. It gave us a feeling of something happening. Varieties of lockdowns in different states are in vogue, with different levels of exemptions and enforcements. The results are still far from encouraging. Can the oxygen supply be better managed in lockdown? Can life saving medicines be better delivered? Can black marketeering be eliminated in a lockdown? Might be avoidable oxygen shortage related deaths could have been avoided, if lockdown would have happened a month back. Lockdown also makes the will of the government crystal clear. When there are no options, where are we looking for one. Who will take us out of this crisis is the only question on every Indian’s mind.


Sanjay Sahay

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