Bihu and Corona in Assam

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With the Covid cases rising alarmingly in India once again, there are contradicting statements coming from the BJP ruled and non-BJP ruled states. On one hand where the Union government is claiming that it has vaccinated a large chunk of its population in record time even beating USA and China in the race, the non-BJP ruled states are still complaining about the rationing of vaccines due to its poor supply and shortage. India has over the last few months exported a huge quantity of vaccines to various nations across the globe but now as it itself has been engulfed in the second wave of the virus, there seems to be a lack of vaccines back at home. If some opposition leaders are to be believed then the prime reason behind it may be attributed to the lack of production, procurement and supply. The Modi government seems to be cloaking this particular fact, as a majority of youth and working class below the age of 45 still remain unvaccinated in the nation.

Given the fact that the age group below 45 is the most socially active group and vaccination being the only fool proof remedy against the virus, it should have been the imperative of the government to make sure that they get vaccinated at the earliest. Notably, India’s economy also majorly depends on the young working class and if the government wants to keep its economy steady while it deals with the second wave of the pandemic, vaccinating the economic engine of the nation i.e. persons below 45 years of age must be its prerogative. However, with the ever rising cases, it’s time the leaders sit together and come with a plan as merely asking people to follow the SOPs seems to be not helping currently. The Maharashtra government has already indirectly signalled towards a lockdown again and asked the state machinery to ready its task forces to control the worsening situation of the state. New Delhi, on the other hand, has already started with night curfews so that the cases can be minimised and contained.

Having said this, back at home, in Assam, the state is preparing to celebrate the biggest festival – Rongali Bihu. Though the state health department has issued new guidelines for the festival celebrations, people do not seem to care about following the regulations. And why should they, just a few days earlier, during an interview with a national media house, Dr Himanta Biswa Sarma, the state health minister was seen openly advocating the non usage of masks. He even went on to say that masks are not needed in Assam and that it was only creating panic among the residents. Notably, even in Assam the cases are on a rise with the tally now touching over 400 positive cases per day. Nevertheless, it seems that the BJP and BJP ruled states are immune to the virus, the conclusion here being drawn by the statements of its leaders. However, it is high time for the Modi led NDA government to introspect over its measures and strategy for the cases might just become uncontrollable soon. And the only way that currently seems to be out of this scenario is to increase the production and supply of vaccines to every state so that more and more people can be vaccinated.

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