Eid & Covid appropriate behavior

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Once again Muslims all over the world are celebrating Eid ul Azha amid Covid 19 pandemic. This Eid inspires the Muslims to be ready to sacrifice their dearest things for the broader cause of righteousness. Sacrificing animals is just symbolic but the basic message is to be prepared to do anything for right causes. In this backdrop, this Eid should inspire the Muslims to do anything and everything to defeat the deadly Covid 19 so that they save themselves and others from the pandemic.

Though the UT administration has ordered further relaxation in restrictions and people are jubilant, medical experts continue to insist that coronavirus can be defeated, or at least contained, only if people take strict precautions in terms of following the Covid-related Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs). There are some alarming reports suggesting that some people still don’t take the risks involved seriously and roam around without taking the necessary precautions. As the gardens and parks and other tourist destinations have been opened for public, people have started gathering there without following the proper SOPs. Even people are seen frequenting crowded markets without wearing face masks. Police, on its part, has been trying to make people follow the SOPs by registering FIRs against violators and even fining them, however, still some people seem adamant to risk their lives and that of their dear ones by not adopting the appropriate behavior.

Kashmir’s divisional administration has already said that no congregational prayers will be allowed on Eid-ul-Azha in the Kashmir valley in view of the prediction of Covid-19 third wave. The administration has decided that the Eid prayers would be allowed in a decentralised way like it has been allowed during the peak of Covid-19 second wave. It further said that considering the damage caused by the third wave of Covid-19 in other countries, everyone should follow the COVID-19 guidelines and precautions strictly during the Eid festivities.

Medical experts describe the trend of violating SOPs as worrisome saying the masses need to adopt Covid-19 SOPs as a new normal because nothing will change immediately. They are of the opinion that despite the vaccination drive, the virus is not going to vanish overnight and therefore taking extreme precautions is the only way to ensure safety from this invisible enemy. It is every individual’s responsibility to ensure that he/she helps in breaking the chain of infection and that is possible only if everyone adheres to ongoing SOPs. Of late Jammu and Kashmir, like rest of the country, has witnessing dangerous spike in Covid-19 positive cases and also infection related deaths. It was this spike that forced the administration to declare lockdown to contain the peoples’ movement to stop the spread of the virus. Though from past few weeks the UT of Jammu and Kashmir has witnessed decrease in positive cases, adhering to the SOPs is the only way to defeat the deadly virus.

It is therefore imperative that people understand that following the SOPs is the only way to safety. People have to behave as responsible citizens and understand that one who doesn’t follow the guidelines is doing utmost disservice to his/her own self, family and the society at large. While the authorities have launched a full-fledged vaccination campaign and more and more people are getting vaccinated, the SOPs still remain the only measure to defeat the virus.  People should not become complacent as the medical experts are continuously suggesting that even after getting vaccinated, following of SOPs is a must. Wearing masks, maintaining social distance and washing hands frequently are the new norms and people should prepare themselves to follow these for a longer period. Let the Eid be celebrated with devotion while following all precautions suggested by the health experts to defeat the spread of the deadly virus.

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