Covid Hope

FOR the second consecutive day, the bodies of the alleged Covid-19 patients washed up on the banks of Ganga – first in Bihar and then in Uttar Pradesh. The videos and images of the bodies went viral on social media in a grim reflection of the havoc wrought by the virulent second Covid-19 wave.

According to a study, close to 90 per cent of India is witnessing a high Covid positivity rate.  640 districts out of the 734 have more than 5 per cent positivity rate. The Centre has stated that the country’s national Covid-19 positivity rate is around 21 percent. The massive active caseload has overwhelmed the hospitals and crematoriums.The healthcare facilities are running short of the medical oxygen and key drugs.  There is also shortage of vaccines and the states are struggling to vaccinate their people. Last month the centre made the vaccine available to 18-45 age group too but the supply is now falling far short of the demand.

On a positive note, the past few days have witnessed plateauing of the Covid-19 caseload. New cases of coronavirus in India fell to 3.29 lakh after 14 days taking the total tally of COVID-19 infections to 2.3 crore. There has been a net decline of 30,016 cases in a span of 24 hours. States like Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Delhi, Rajasthan, Haryana, Chhattisgarh, Bihar ad Gujarat that first witnessed a steady rise in the number of coronavirus cases at the beginning of the deadly second wave of the pandemic are now seeing a decrease in new infections.

If this decline in the new cases holds, it would be a great news for the country. It would underline that the ongoing curbs on the movement and the measures to ensure compliance of the Covid appropriate behaviour are paying off. One could hope that the daily caseload declines to manageable levels in the weeks to come, making it possible for the government to ease up the restrictions and reopen the economy.

Last year the economy had dived by a whopping 24 percent in the first quarter. Thousands of jobs were lost as a result. Many sectors of the economy like tourism, travel, hotel industry, retail  etc were badly hit.  But this year other than impacting economy, the devastating second wave has led to loss of thousands of lives. By the time it ends, this wave would leave deep psychological scars behind, that will take years to heal.  Here’s hoping that the pandemic draws to an early end, enabling the people to pick up pieces and get back to normal life.

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