No respite from the demon

Monday Musing

[ M Doley ]

The death of any family member can have a devastating impact on the family. It can cause intense pain and heartache.

This morning, I woke up to a phone call from one of my friends. I was informed about the death of a relative due to the coronavirus. I was dumbstruck for a moment after hearing the sad news. He succumbed to complications from Covid-19 after fighting for nearly a month.

The virus has snatched away many of our loved ones; countless families have been ripped apart. Nobody knows how many children have been left orphaned and how many of them have been pushed to embrace an uncertain future.

In Arunachal, the number of fatalities from the coronavirus is inching towards 100 with three more casualties reported on Saturday. We have seen deaths almost every day in the state since the resurgence of the virus.

Arunachal, with 95 Covid fatalities (till Friday), is the only state after Mizoram (31) and Lakshadweep (22) to record less than 100 deaths since the beginning of the pandemic last year.

While the state’s overall Covid-19 positivity rate on Saturday stood at around 7 percent, it was a whopping 30 percent in Tawang district with a single-day spike of 41 cases. Several districts are also witnessing a steady rise in cases in the last few days.

The health department on 4 May stated that there may be around 30,000 new Covid cases in the state in the next four months. This time the virus has penetrated into remote areas, where there were fewer numbers of cases and fatalities reported during the first wave of the pandemic.

As per a health department report, large numbers of cases so far are found to be symptomatic, some of them requiring oxygen support. While sending a Covid patient into home isolation without fulfilling the prescribed norms, like keeping a device with him/her for self-monitoring of oxygen level, is not safe and recommended, it is the right time to increase the number of beds in the Covid hospitals, so that no patient suffers for want of medical treatment.

Every year during monsoon, landslides and floods create havoc in Arunachal and many places remain cut off for months. In the face of such impending situation, making all necessary arrangements, including stockpiling lifesaving medicines and ration items in advance in the flood- and landslide-prone districts is the need of the hour.

The recent report of disruption of road communication to remote Anjaw district due to landslides is an alarm bell. People who are still taking the coronavirus lightly should understand that any negligence on their part can cost many lives. Further, we must not be complacent after receiving the anti-Covid vaccine and continue to be on guard against the virus as people are getting infected even after taking the vaccine.