NES slams govt for poor Covid-19 crisis mgmt

ITANAGAR, Jul 20: The Nyishi Elite Society [NES] expressed displeasure over the manner in which the state government has been handling the Covid-19 crisis in the state.
In a press statement, the NES alleged that the first “locally infected” Covid-19 patient succumbed to the coronavirus disease without having been administered a single dose of tablet or drug used to treat such patients in other states since long.
“The health department beamingly announced the arrival of ‘Remdesvir’, a drug being used to treat Covid-19 patients, only on 18 July,” NES president Bengia Tolum said, and slammed the state government for not procuring the drug and making it available at an earlier date at the TRIHMS and other Covid hospitals and care centres across the state.
“This is the state of affairs with a single patient in the only state Covid hospital,” Tolum said, adding that things would have been worse if there were hundreds or thousands patients like in other states.
He also alleged that the patients in the CCC in Lekhi and the Covid hospital, TRIHMS, are not being administered even low-cost vitamin tablets for boosting their immunity, and that “junk food provided to the positive patients and quarantined inmates are hitting the headlines of social media.”
Tolum said the testing process too was deplorable and results were “awful.”
He said all the designated quarantine centres must provide free food, medicines and accommodation. Under the given circumstances, he said, “the people are left at lurch and orphaned without a caretaker.”
The NES president rued that the state government never paid heed to the pleas and suggestions of the civil society groups of the state for “regulated home coming” of the stranded people.
“The concept of ‘as is where is basis’, ‘differed return’ by granting nominal ration money to the stranded people, ‘intensifying testing and repeat testing of Ccovid-19′, ’14 days compulsory camped quarantine’ and ‘vigilant check on inflow of outsiders’ by erecting three-tier naka bandhi in view of the porous borders were never pondered over nor implemented,” he said.
Tolum said the NES had written to chief secretary on 1 April and the AITF to the chief minister on 8 April and to the home minister on 28 April in this regard.
He said numerous meetings were held at various levels, including government-CBOs parlays at the DK convention centre here on 1 June, chaired by the home minister, and another meeting on 18 June, chaired by the CM, and all of them proved to be showy “hollow exercises” without any action plan drawn out of them.
The NES demanded that the state government detail the fund received from the Centre, if it was provided, the voluntary contributions made by the public, and the state’s own fund, along with expenditure details, and make it available in the public domain through its official website.
“The contributions of three MPs in the fight against Covid-19 should also be made public and subjected to social audit and answerable to the people of the state,” it said.
The NES suggested that “if there was any shortage of fund, the state government should prove their efforts of seeking central fund and further fix responsibilities to our three MPs for liaisoning with the central government on this count.”
Tolum said the government should provide adequate PPE to the frontline workers, stock adequate lifesaving medicine in the TRIHMS and all other district hospitals and health centres of the state, exempt accommodation and food charges levied in the designated government quarantine centres, and provide designated accommodations for the frontline workers, so as to restrict them from working from their homes.
He appealed to the people of the state, particularly of the state capital region, to cooperate with the government in its efforts to stop the virus from further spreading in the state.
Tolum appealed to the people to not support and patronize objections to the proposals and decisions of the government in setting up of quarantine centres as it is in the greater interest of the common people and the state.
The NES president emphasized the need for strict implementation of the SOPs, wearing of facemask, maintaining social and physical distancing, and strict action against violators as per the provisions of the Disaster Management Act, 2005.
He further appealed to the people placed under quarantine to bear with the facilities being provided by the government, and requested them not to expect home-like choice of facilities in the quarantine centres.
Meanwhile, the NES urged the disaster management department to provide necessary fund for restoration of the damaged roads, bridges, etc, “at this hour of compounding crisis of Covid-19 coupled with monsoon fury.”