[ M Doley ]
This is probably the first time in human history that we are trying to overcome a humanitarian crisis by staying indoors and doing nothing.
Never before had we given much thought to ‘social distancing’ – a buzzword at the moment for prevention of Covid-19. Social distancing intruded into our daily lives unceremoniously after the arrival of the coronavirus, and we are slowly getting accustomed to it.
Human beings are born social, and therefore it is in their nature to seek companionship and connect with others. However, the lockdown imposed as a measure to curb the spread of the virus has changed our attitude and lifestyles in unanticipated ways.
My confused neighbours, for example, who used to frequent my house before, have stopped visiting. People are becoming wary of one another (and why should they not, given the highly contagious nature of the virus?)
Boredom coupled with lack of physical activity for a prolonged period of time has worsened the mental and physical health of the people.
As expected, the lockdown in the capital region has been extended for another week, and we have to tolerate it as the virus is expanding its grip in new areas. The state government is still maintaining that there is no community transmission in the state. However, random collection of samples and testing are required to rule out the ‘third stage spread’.
Since most of the people who have been tested for Covid-19 so far are asymptomatic, there are chances of people infected with the virus but with no symptoms spreading the virus unknowingly. Hence, random collection of samples and testing are the dire need of the hour to prevent the situation from slipping out of control.
There is also a rumour doing the rounds that Covid-19 is ‘weakening’ with time, and that there would have been more deaths if the virus had not lost its strength.
The virus remains lethal, at least for now, experts say. Giving credit to the reported ‘weakening’ of the virus for the absence of deaths and recovery of the patients directly or indirectly is very unfortunate. It is an insult to the doctors and all other people working tirelessly to treat and cure the patients.
As of now, we have seen only two Covid-19-related deaths in Arunachal, and the hope is that there will be no more deaths. Any negligence on the part of the public to follow the health advisories and attempt to defy the restrictions imposed upon us at this moment would be disastrous and increase the burden on the government that is already suffering from a double blow, including of natural calamities.