Flights Of Fantasy
[ M Panging Pao ]
The worldwide Covid-19 pandemic has infected 173 lakh and killed 6.74 lakh people. Indian figures are 16.4 lakh infected, with 35,700 deaths. The figures for the NE are 50,000 cases with 132 deaths, and Arunachal has 2509 cases with 3 deaths. With lockdowns, quarantines and isolations, Covid-19 has created panic and desperation in many parts of the country and the world. The fear of catching the disease and isolation woes has increased the stress level and affected the mentality of many citizens. It is reported that many people are suffering from stress and anxiety due to Covid-19. We have stopped singing, stopped playing, stopped enjoying, and most of all, stopped laughing.
Covid-19 has no cure presently, and it has to be fought and defeated by our bodies themselves. Therefore we should boost body immunity to fight back and defeat Covid-19. Immunity can be boosted by eating nutritious diet, keeping the body fit by exercising regularly, and last but not least, keeping a positive attitude. People have even invented a Corona diet. Some people are advising to drink warm water and tea frequently. Many people are having Vitamin C and zinc tablets to boost immunity.
Another aspect of fighting Covid-19 is by staying fit with regular exercise to boost body immunity. Lockdowns and quarantines can be used to keep fit by indoor exercises like skipping, treadmill walks/runs, aerobics, etc. Yoga and breathing exercises like pranayama can also be practiced.
Another way is to retain a positive attitude. Though Covid-19 is highly contagious, the case fatality rate (CFR) is very less. The CFR for the Northeast is about 0.264 percent and for Arunachal it is 0.2 percent only. Almost 90-95 percent Covid-19 cases are asymptomatic. Therefore it is important to keep ourselves occupied and busy during lockdowns. People may choose from hobbies like reading books, gardening, music, dancing, art/painting. People may also brush up their culinary skills by cooking and by doing household chores.
It is also a good time for spending quality time with family members.
Since we have to learn to live with Covid-19 for at least another few months or years, we should treat Covid-19 like other diseases like influenza, common cold, dengue, etc. Reports indicate that a vaccine may be available in the next few months. However, mass availability may take some time. Methods like localized containment zones, home quarantines and weekend lockdowns should be adopted without resorting to total lockdowns. Total lockdowns lead to loss of livelihoods, loss of jobs, earnings, buying power, loss of revenue, etc. If the government does not generate revenue, from where will the money come to fight Covid-19?
Following laid down precautions like social distancing, frequent handwashing/sanitizing, avoiding large gatherings and wearing face masks, let us build up our body immunity to fight back and defeat Covid-19. Let us eat healthy home-cooked food, keep fit by exercising regularly, and by keeping a positive attitude. We should start laughing, singing and dancing also at our homes while maintaining social distancing. Let’s start tackling Covid-19 with laughter and positivity. We have to tackle many more dangerous situations threatening human existence, like floods, earthquakes, global warming and another nuclear war. (The contributor is retired Group Captain, Indian Air Force)