Tuesday, January 18, 2022
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Editorial

A Collective Effort

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By The Editorial Team Updated: Jan 13, 2022 10:23 pm
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As was the case in the last two waves of coronavirus, the arrival of third wave in the state may be delayed, thanks to the relatively sparse population and geographical location of Nagaland but it appears inevitable. The sudden spike of cases on Wednesday, from 29 in the previous day to 199, and then 86 on Thursday indicates that the third wave may have arrived in the state. Whether the cases were detected among the travellers and returnees or through self-test, the sudden spike, which was the highest single-day rise since June 5 last year, is a cause of worry. The porous borders Nagaland shares with other states give ample room for infected travellers to sneak into the state. Officially, the state hasn’t recorded any Omicron variant so far but there are possibilities of its existence; genome sequencing on more samples could prove otherwise and give a clearer picture of the situation. This calls for the need to be more precautious in order to avoid another catastrophe, loss of lives and lockdowns. However, the fact that people continue to flout Covid-appropriate behaviour in public places despite knowing the possible consequences of a wave and forcing the authorities to impose penalties on defaulters, only goes on to show that the citizens are irresponsible, careless and complacent. By now, almost everyone is aware that the only way to curb the spread of the disease is by following the basic sops like wearing face mask in public places, avoiding mass gatherings and crowded places, washing hands regularly and getting tested if the slightest symptom is sensed, besides getting vaccinated. If the public is still unwilling to play its part in mitigating the spread of the disease, it will be unfair to put the entire blame on the government and the authorities when situation worsens because of carelessness.

Any government, be it of a country or state, is bound to respond to health crisis with restrictive measures besides enhancing healthcare services, and not doing so will attract a backlash. Some countries have started imposing lockdown again owing to the surge in Covid cases sparked by the Omicron variant. Now, many are apprehensive if India too will take up such measures with daily cases crossing two lakh and active caseload currently standing at more than 11 lakh. Having witnessed the untold hardships the people had faced in the past, the Centre and state governments will think twice before imposing such a disruptive measure but it can’t be ruled out if things get out of hand. The upcoming assembly elections in five states from February 10 to March 7 can worsen the pandemic situation in the country, if last year’s experience is anything to go by. Both the authorities and citizens should be more vigilant during this period as inter-state movement is expected to increase. The consequences of carelessness will be felt in all the states and not just those going to polls. To avoid an unpleasant situation, the concerned state authorities should play its part, so too the citizens. A pandemic can be overcome only through collective effort.

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By The Editorial Team Updated: Jan 13, 2022 10:23:32 pm