An Open letter to all
We all are going through a difficult phase individually, as a society, city, state and country. We had a major problem and a simple solution – identification & isolation coupled with hand washing, mask and distance. In our greed, wisdom, attitude, smartness we made a mess of it and thousands died and millions are suffering and number is likely to multiply as the time passes. Why such a thing happened despite timely warning particularly by Central leadership.
Like every failure to day I am sitting and analyzing the causes and causes are many. We need to understand them to avoid further deterioration. No single factor can be singled out but I will say all without mincing words. I will say all without fear of repercussion.
- People acting smart at airport – taking crocin (antipyretic) before landing – trying to fool… whom?
- Giving wrong history, hiding facts to reach home avoiding quarantine, in the process spreading infection and killing their own near and dear ones, and vulnerable parents – blaming other can not help in such a situation, you can just lesson your mental burden. Media could have projected the as better places and safe.
- Use of faulty infra red sensor thermometer without calibration, without proper training. Poor execution and follow up, putting wrong persons to do the job……Administrative failure.
- People with very strong religious inclination though in minority. They spread the infection in every nook and corner of country, even to places like Andaman. And to make things worst they refused to disclose and come forward to control the disease. Uttar failure of socio religious group for which purpose religion is made. They failed in their socio religious responsibilities
OFortunately majority of the religious groups acted the right way and helped in controlling the damage.
- DSO and DM in certain area were not acting intelligently and did not used the authority with which they were vested.
I felt they didn’t not know, they were not trained, they had no desire and they were scared. They did not take the field and allowed the infection to get out of control, from identified persons and area. They lacked leadership skill, were more of clerks and did not understand the process. They made mistake after mistake. Very sorry but cannot help to criticize them. In smaller town they acted well but in major cities where these in-efficient were posted because of their clout failed to act. I have come across a series of acts/ orders where the intention is to go for coverup and complete the file, rather than to take effective action. I would prefer to hang them publicly if the law permits. The responsible people failed to fulfill their responsibilities.
- Our dear democracy prevented us from taking harsh actions to contain the disease like China. Our people talked about democracy and freedom of speech and so many other freedoms. The way we are we needed a stricter approach.
- Lock down was taken by some as challenge to show their smartness and to bypass the system. Sneaking past the system.
- Opening up… unlocking. Very rightly opening of economy was initiated but people acted as if disease has been controlled. Forgetting the conditions which were imposed/ requested with opening up.Hand wash and sanitisation, use of mask and social distancing. Unfortunately all were flouted, depending on conditions, nobody is watching, I am a sr politician, I am a bully, I have money etc. what an attitude, they didn’t understand.
- People not washing hands properly or sanitising them as per protocol. Some overdid some didn’t do.
- Use of PPE irrationally. Common man started wearing gloves and touching everything and everywhere spreading infection unknowingly to others and acquiring infection kthemselves. They were touching their own mask with dirty gloved hands. Einstein rightly said ..human stupidity has no end.
- I saw people wearing surgical caps..why, I saw Delhi police personal wearing cotton gloves upto elbow on the orders of sr officers…who gave these instructions. People continued to spit all over, politicians gathered crowd to show their clout. I saw people using overall to distribute food and take photo.
- Masks , overalls and sanitizers were overused and this lead to shortage of these items , leading to price jump. A hundred percent increase in cost doesn’t mean much when single pice is bought but when you buy 1000 pcs it makes hell of a difference. Fortunately Indian entrepreneurs rose to occasion and supplied though slightly late.
- Media became technical expert overriding technical experts mis guiding public. There are hundreds of instances no point in discussion as no purpose will be served.
- In this pandemic rights of individuals cannot take supremacy over rights of society. Fortunately judicial system checked itself generally, but in Supreme Court attorney general mentioned that certain high courts are acting independently interfering with local governance.
- If I don’t mention uncontrolled migration irrespective of the cause. adding to spread of infections, I will be riding emotional wave and not looking at practical issues. Lacs of untested infected emotionally unstable, misguided, having so many issues were moving in a crowd. It was a good media opportunity and they covered it to the best of their TRP. I wish better sense should’ve prevailed. Fortunately railway did a good job. States who received them are having tough time. But it calls for really efficient administration.
- Very fact that recent testing in containment zones have shown a high incidence of positive persons, shows that rules are in for a toss. It spread the infection in nearby areas. Delhi containment zone number is going up.
- Local governance in many areas indulged in politics rather than taking effective action. Blame game was visible to all and certain situations created panic. True , realistic pic was not projected to public leading to panic. What was the need to project 5 lacs and 15 lacs figures.
In a pandemic no point in hiding anything. You block tests, close labs, don’t facilitate but take coercive action.
Medical personnel were first projected as frontline Warrier. Later media started picking isolated incident without verifying, started projecting them as demons, fleecing people,in human, insensitive and what ever adjectives they could think off. Probably media never tried to understand the problems of manpower and logistics in such a situation. They can not accept any other service being given a higher pedestal, psychological issues with them.
But this resulted in a scare, patients panicked, politicians, administration and judiciary adopting a hyperactive role. Price capping was done even going beyond what the so called expert group projected, in their enthusiasm. They forgot that majority health services are by private sector. Pvt sector which is spending a huge amount to maintain services, even absorbing the losses due to unoccupied non COVID beds, then why squeeze it to the extent where it just perishes.
Remember a dead system can not provide service. But some wise men think otherwise. They even included non COVID conditions in COVID treatment…. what logic. No other state has done except delhi. Where wise men are in good numbers.
Oh god, let this system improve and work, I had analysed it so that we can improve upon. There may be other factors like availability, virulence, limitations but we have to fight it jointly as one country.
Dr C M Bhagat