Zeeshan Rasool Khan

LOCKDOWN & OUR RESPONSIBILITIES

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Covid-19 is spreading like wildfire. The only way that has been suggested to douse this fire is a social distancing and to ensure it, the lockdown has been announced in many countries. Economists already had warned that corona is not just anti-human but it will impinge on the economy. One does not have to be a rocket scientist to understand how the economy will be affected as it is obvious that the lock-down means cessation of economic activity.

Which country will survive this bout of infection and which will surrender economically is the talking point for economists. However, it is a concern for general masses how the corona threat will influence the life of the common man. A big chunk of our population depends on the business and earns its livelihood through large-scale and small-scale businesses. Major section belongs to daily wage class and there are those as well who live on what they earn from dawn to dusk. At this crucial stage, when almost all countries have started lockdown, all of them would be affected without any dubiety. In a situation where even big business owners are in panic, the small-scale businesspersons, casual workers, hawkers, street vendors are bound to bear the brunt.

Also, in light of our poverty rate, there is certitude that most of the people would now hardly be able to meet both the ends. Some may now have nothing to kill their hunger and satisfy their everyday needs. Many families may suffer beyond imagination. Besides, there is a section of people, who are already living at the mercy of lord, depending on others; they too are going to face the worst times. Life for all these could be much difficult because life is confined to houses now.

Poverty experts hold the same opinion. According to them, in times of natural disasters and emergencies, low-income families, poor, needier, and destitute are primary victims. When things go wrong they tend to be the first hit.

With regard to this, many initiatives have been launched by governments of every country including India, to ensure the well-being of their population. Funds have been allocated; schemes have been formulated and financial packages have been announced to provide relief to the people amid corona crises. But the bitter experience of past insinuate that most of the needy-people may not succeed in deducing benefit out of these government-sponsored welfare measures. Even though they would receive benefits, there are apprehensions that it may not be enough for them to fulfill requirements. I wish to be proven wrong, but if such a condition arises that policies and initiatives of government could not cope up with the existing problem then much greater responsibility lies on the shoulders of responsible citizens of the country/state. For that, every responsible citizen, benefactors, social workers, need to keep their sleeves rolled up.

In fact, we must not stick around and watch how government agencies will work, how they would tackle the current situation, and would they fail or meet the cut, rather we must be prepared and even should start working at an individual level. Since no one knows how challenging will be upcoming time as the pandemic is accelerating showing no signs of slowing down, it is necessary to brace up for confrontation with the emerging problems.

It was encouraging to see many people coming forth to offer help. As per reports many hoteliers, haves, and philanthropists have proffered assistance to the administration to manage current crises. We must follow the suit according to our capacities. All of us need to come forward to contribute in any way possible, be through financially, by providing food, and other requisite essentialities to those who are prone to the fallouts of recession. Citizens with social consciousness should lead the scene to inspire and activate others. By starting from the community level, we can gradually expand its dimensions and take it up to the next level. Even so, the people would begin to work in their respective areas there is no need for expansion. We can carry out the work without letting people of our area depend on others. But all that is needed is to begin from somewhere.

In one of the national newspapers, I was quite astonished to read that ‘strays find it hard to fend for food, amid pandemic’. That means the animals and birds also are indirect sufferers of this pandemic. As the number of stray cats and dogs, birds rely on waste food and leftovers provided by hoteliers, restaurants, and other people, with the lockdown, they are struggling for the food. In case lockdown is protracted, there is a probability that these speechless creatures may die due to starvation. And it is only the superior creature Human that can protect them. It is clear that animals/birds do not transmit this infection thus there is no danger in making their feeding sure. Caring for them will be the greatest service that we can render.

Let us coordinate at this time of adversity so that we could crush the hopelessness around us. Additionally, taking precautionary measures coupled with prayers is necessary at the moment. May God be merciful on entire humanity.

The author writes on the current issues and can be mailed at mohdzeeshan605@gmail.com    

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