Coronavirus: What Lies Beyond March 31 or 15th April?

For the first time ever the public transport system of the second most populated country and the largest democracy of the world, India, has come to a complete standstill—the biggest railway network of the world, Indian Railways, has stopped operating since the last two days and domestic flights of the country going to be curtailed completely, with exception only to cargo flights, from midnight tonight, that is the 24th of March, 2020. More than 80 cities covering 30 states/territories of India are now under total lockdown with more and more states/territories joining all the time. The fight against the novel Coronavirus, COVID-19, is in full swing—a desperate preventive drive so that the country does not suffer like Italy or Spain or Iran or USA or England in the dreaded Stage-3 of the irresistible virus. Most Indian medical and other experts are saying that Stage-3 is yet to come to India, and so, there has been an atmosphere of frightening uncertainty, suspense and morbid anticipation throughout the country. The normal or the usual deadline adopted for the lock-downs is 31st March, 2020 or in some cases 15th April, 2020. Nobody yet has an answer as to what is going to happen after that.

Things are not being particularly helped by the overall world scenario—total infections racing towards the 4 hundred thousand mark; total deaths surpassing 16500; Italy continuing to suffer with deaths crossing 6000; the death spree not showing any sign of withdrawing in other countries of Spain, USA, France, Iran except for perhaps China where no new deaths are taking place and almost nil infections over the past few days; in India total infections have crossed 500 and deaths at 10 people with a surge of infections in the last two days; with the possible introduction of a vaccine at least one and half years away no one is having any idea about the future course of the virus. Our Planet Earth is still being gripped by a relentless uncertainty presenting a most bleak economic scenario in the coming months, and still with no solution in sight. You can check World Coronavirus Updates...

The Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, addressed the nation on the evening of 19th March, 2020 appealing to all citizens to observe a day of ‘Janta (Public) Curfew’ on Sunday, the 22nd of March, a unique concept that was first used by the student leaders during the Assam Movement during 1979-85, and in a way, trying to test the peoples’ resilience to more stringent measures in the coming days. If effect, this was the beginning of the lock downs with the State of Maharashtra declaring a lockdown with effect from the previous day to Janta Curfew, that is from 21st March, Saturday, in four cities. Being perhaps inspired by Italy and Spain the Prime Minister also asked people to show respect with thanksgivings to ‘Coronavirus warriors’ meaning all of doctors, health workers, administrators, police, security forces etc at 5 PM on the same day by clapping hands or clanging metal plates or blowing conch in the balconies of their respective homes. The measures really worked wonders preparing the 1.3 billion citizens for the future challenge. However, as happens with the teeming millions, some people in some pockets considered it a kind of celebration and observed it by taking out processions and even bursting firecrackers on the streets, thus negating the very purpose of the campaign. Anyway, the Prime Minister is going to address the people again tonight, the 24th of March, 2020, perhaps with new resolves, new initiatives and newer tactics to combat the never-before challenge.

And, we the people of India, in complete solidarity with fellow-citizens of other countries, are ready to make any sacrifice, sitting at home, so that humanity stops suffering more from the merciless virus. With the exceptions of some of the idle brains turning to or giving in to the ‘devil’s workshop’ most of us are doing bravely: suddenly jerked out of reverie that this is the reality, never-before in our lifetime or in the modern age, that impels us to continue staying indoors with no access to any outside activity or events or entertainment; total social distancing even with the few people we meet in a day, particularly with our dear kith and kin, giving them the message that we’d do much better being apart; being forced to shed all our eternal pretensions—the busiest of the busy, the successful of the most successful professionals, the most celebrated of the celebrities, at the moment, finding that they have nothing to do except sit at home; the old and the elderly being given special care and of course, blessed with new television and the internet so that we can keep in touch with the Planet Earth fraternity.


So then, we stay at home not knowing for how many days more; follow the guidelines religiously not believing in all the propaganda or fake news or rumors surging all around us, do everything possible at our ends to control and prevent the spread of the virus and, pray…pray continuously for the betterment of the our world…for the ultimate defeat of the virus…for the eternal spirit of humanity to thrive on…and not to think or ever panic about what lies ahead… Amen!

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