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2020, Another Year Leaves

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One more year is taking a leave from us. Year 2020 will be remembered for many reasons in human history. With the outbreak of coronavirus in China in December 2019 spread all over and the pandemic impacted all spheres of life and has even reached to Antarctica continent of the planet.

Lakhs of people lost the lives world over and in millions people became the victims of this deadly virus. To contain its further spread and save the humanity from further damage, health and administrative institutions of almost all nations issued a set of SOPs and other provisions. Worldwide lockdown was announced to minimize its spread was minimised. But at the same time it further put humanity in distress. People lost their jobs, economy of almost all states got crumbled, education of children suffered most and when people were forced to be indoors they became the victims of psychological and mental trauma.

In order to compensate the loss of education, world switched over to online mode of teaching. Many android applications were developed to be used for teaching purposes. In rest of the parts of globe, it proved an alternative during testing times but in Kashmir due to lack of high speed internet many issues were associated with it. Instead of a blessing it proved a curse because authorities made it mandatory for the officials to own an android phone for teaching and training purpose but when the videos of NISHTHA through DIKSHA were viewed, hardly anybody could view the full video thus not helping the students.

Business, transport and other sectors too suffered due to this pandemic. Public, private ceremonies and functions were held through virtual mode. Religious gatherings were also restricted for a long time and only recently were these restored. Tourism sector suffered a huge loss. Kashmir being world famous tourist attraction, the ill effects of lockdown and pandemic were felt seriously by people and those associated with tourism industry suffered the worst.

Among the SOPs issued by the state health authorities, maintaining social distance , wearing mask and use of sanitizers was encouraged from rural to urban areas equally. Sometimes even authorities issued strict orders to implement the SOPs. Authorities even fined the persons not wearing masks and violating SOPs at public places. Passenger capacity was reduced to half and the fare was doubled in commercial vehicles, a step perhaps taken first time in human history. OPD in public hospitals too was halted for many months. Surgeries were delayed and only trauma related one’s were performed in government hospitals. Exams were also conducted online and few universities like IGNOU announced mass promotion for learners. Civil aviation also got his and most of the national and international were halted for longer periods.

In Jammu and Kashmir an important event which happened in its history was the holding of DDC (District Development Council) elections. In its political history, first time the third tier of panchayat raj institutions was made functional by conducting these free and fair elections. After the abrogation of article 370 and 35A by central government, it was first time that all the mainstream parties took part in the election process. BJP emerged the single largest party with the winning of 75 seats. Regional parties forged an alliance called PAGD (people’s alliance for Gupkar declaration) which won 110 seats out of 280 seats. In each district there are fourteen seats making a total of 280 seats in entire J & K. For this reason also, in JK 2020 will be remembered for all times to come.

This year of pandemic has taught us many lessons besides choking the wheels of normal life. We came to know that normal class room teaching has no alternative. Without sending students to schools, their all round development can’t be expected at home. Discipline, obedience, honesty and many other qualities are developed only at school.

  • Writer teaches at Govt Secondary School Anderwan Ganderbal.

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