Advertisement
Saturday, Oct 16, 2021
Outlook.com

Opinion | In India, COVID-19 Pandemic Has Painfully Laid Bare Our Societal Faultlines

A lockdown anywhere protects the rich and exposes the poor to human and economic challenges, writes virologist Shahid Jameel

Opinion | In India, COVID-19 Pandemic Has Painfully Laid Bare Our Societal Faultlines
The Long March |
Opinion | In India, COVID-19 Pandemic Has Painfully Laid Bare Our Societal Faultlines
outlookindia.com
2020-04-18T13:46:45+05:30

Kajodi was a powerful image. A lonely figure, the vast emptiness of the Noida-Greater Noida Expressway and the horizon dotted with high-rise buildings. In the aftermath of the national lockdown announced on March 24, the 90-year-old was trying to walk from Delhi-NCR to her village in Rajasthan, some 400 km away. The image infuriated me. Then it depressed me. Trained as a scientist—a biochemist and virologist to be exact—I was in demand for my views on the coronavirus outbreak. Relying on public health principles, I was advocating social distancing and a lockdown…. But wasn’t I being completely blinkered by the science, and not paying attention to the “public” in public health? Indeed, I was…and I was angry with myself.

How dare I sit in the comforts of my South Delhi apartment and pontificate to people living on the edge? How would I explain, let alone justify, “social distancing” to someone who lives in an urban slum in Delhi or a chawl in Mumbai? One room with five or six people? My anger turned to depression. Over...

Advertisement

Outlook Newsletters

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

Read More from Outlook

Jammu & Kashmir: Two Non-Local Vendors Shot Dead By Militants

Jammu & Kashmir: Two Non-Local Vendors Shot Dead By Militants

Police claim 13 terrorists have been killed in Jammu and Kashmir in nine encounters over the last nine days.

Congress Says India No Longer Regarded Democracy, Announces Dates To Elect Party President

Congress Says India No Longer Regarded Democracy, Announces Dates To Elect Party President

The crucial meeting of the Congress working committee (CWC) on Saturday approved the schedule for organisational polls at various levels.

India 'Mentor' Dhoni Ready To Set Template For CSK

India 'Mentor' Dhoni Ready To Set Template For CSK

Dhoni has been pretty ambiguous about his future as an IPL player. And the new role with India will help him decide which route to take.

Kerala: Atleast 10 Missing In Kottayam As Torrential Rain Hits Hard, IAF Assistance Sought

Kerala: Atleast 10 Missing In Kottayam As Torrential Rain Hits Hard, IAF Assistance Sought

Landslides have been reported around the areas of Koottickal and Peruvanthanam, the two hilly areas falling under Kottayam and Idukki districts respectively.

Advertisement