A tiny strand of Ribonucleic acid (RNA), has made its way into the world’s human population from Wuhan in 2019. This is the novel Corona virus.The name coronaviridae comes from the fringe around the virus- like the corona or crown, the halo around the sun.
This newly, ‘crowned’ viral particle has introduced a pneumonia that may be lethal in some by causing respiratory failure.
It affects the health care system by overwhelming resources, by causing pneumonia and using up hospital beds and ventilators and equipment that other patients could have used. It has claimed the lives of frontline healthcare personnel. Measures to contain the disease and preserve physical health include lock-downs, which affect the financial health and cause other problems to the citizens.
Many of us wonder how India is coping with this virus. Especially the smaller towns and districts.
In 1772, Warren Hastings created the post of District collector. This became the operating point of governance for the matters of a district.
In 2020, almost two and a half centuries later, the districts and their present day administrators, a legacy of the former rulers from the British Raj, are face to face with this crowned particle, trying to usurp rule.
This next bit is about a district in Bihar, Saran and about the young district magistrate, Subrat Kumar Sen. What have they done? (see reference link)
They created seven different cells -the quarantine cell, the 104 helpline for ambulance/medical services was beefed up, an independent cell to deal with confirmed COVID-19 cases which included officers and doctors, a cell to regulate prices to handle panic calls about price rise, an independent control room separate from the existing law and order cell, and the 24-hour district emergency operation center, strengthened with extra manpower.
Action was taken against those hoarding and trying to create an artificial crisis.
They share a border with Uttar Pradesh, and they managed to ensure transport for 2500 labourers who came across the border into different parts of Bihar, and for about 1000 migrants who returned to Saran from other parts.
They have used an app-based service to track the details of the high-risk cases, while providing medical check-up, and facilities for quarantine, for stay. For food they have created Aapda Rahat Kendras in sub-districts.
There is a lot of good work going on. This is just one of the 736 districts of India.
Yes, we may not be perfect.
But stories like these makes me beam with pride at the resilience of our nation despite all the challenges we face. It shows how administration and leadership can make a difference.
For our part, let us promise to follow guidelines, and help those who are helping us and our loved ones. And most importantly, let us help those who are less fortunate than we are.
Reference: Archana, M., 2020. How A Small Town In India Is Fighting Coronavirus. [online] Rediff. Available at: https://www.rediff.com/…/how-a-small-town-in-i…/20200403.htm [Accessed 3 April 2020].