In the wake of the grave crisis that has hit mankind, media all across the world have been focusing on this very topic. The COVID-19 horror that has stupefied billions, affected millions and killed thousands all across the globe, a situation where the world’s superpowers have sort of surrendered, it has indeed become a matter of concern for all. India as a globalized country could not remain unaffected by this very disease. Officially labeled as a pandemic on 11th March 2020 by the World Health Organisation, the WHO somewhat failed in its job to recognize it as a threat to the security of all nations, and this delay indeed affected millions.
India’s success story under PM Modi’s Leadership
India saw its first coronavirus case back on 30th January 2020, when a Wuhan University student came back to his hometown. For a month or two things were quite in hand, but as time passed, we saw a hike in the number of cases. Seeing it as a threat to the security of the nation and watching the plight of several other countries, the Government decided not to twiddle its thumbs. The things seemed under control and certain measures were taken to slow the spread of this deadly virus.
In the initial stage, India suspended visas from COVID hit countries. People returning from abroad were compulsorily quarantined. There was checking on the airports, but all this did not seem enough to win this battle. On 22nd March 2020, PM Modi announced a 14 hour long Janta Curfew issuing guidelines to everyone to not come out of their houses unless it was an emergency. Post Janta Curfew, stringent measures were hence taken to overcome the virus. The Prime MInister while addressing the whole nation on 24th March announced a 21-day nationwide lockdown in order to prevent the community spread. According to a report, 76.8% people trusted the Modi-led Government in handling the virus. On the last day of lockdown, on 14th April, the Prime Minister again addressed the people, where he, in conformation with the chief ministers of all states unanimously decided to increase the lockdown till May 3. Interestingly, in the second phase of lockdown the similar report as mentioned above stated that the trust in the Modi Government has increased to 93.5% that it will manage the corona battle effectively.
During this lockdown phase, when the Doctors were at the forefront of the battle, Police and all the other departments gave their all to protect their countrymen. In the pursuit of saving the citizens, many doctors and police officials had to lose their lives. However, the need of the hour became to protect the citizens. There were several zones that were specified for each locality. Green zone was referred to as the areas where there were no corona cases and talks were held to ease the lockdown in these zones. Red zones were those where more than 10 cases were found.
One of the most interesting things which can prove that India has overcome the early hardships of the coronavirus is the Cluster Containment Strategy. In Delhi and various parts of India, several hotspots of coronavirus have been identified and various steps ranging from geographical quarantining to sanitization and rapid testing have taken place. Police officials have been deployed so that no one can enter the place and hence the chain of transmission can be broken. Rapid testing in those areas can result in early detection of cases and can hence stop the spread. This strategy has proved to be fruitful and has drawn various appreciation.
On 26th March 2020, the Finance Ministry Nirmala Sitharaman came out with a 1.7 trillion INR economic stimulus package to help those affected by this pandemic. Also, grains up to 5 kgs were made free and several other schemes were formulated by the state governments to help those worst affected by the virus and the lockdown. Apart from the government, people benevolently donated to the PM-CARES relief fund which will be used to help people out there affected by the virus.
As stressed upon by PM Modi, mutual cooperation will be the key to win this battle against the virus. The PM has very passionately used the technology in order to promote social distancing. He conducted innumerable video conferences with various ministers, chief ministers and several other bodies to help find a solution to contain this virus. Recently, he even conducted video conferencing with Village Sarpanch and hence focused on micro-level planning to get rid of the virus. Apart from that, an application named Aarogya Setu has been launched for COVID-19 tracking, contact tracing, and to connect to health services thus helping people to get aware and be cautious of the disease.
All these things prove that the PM Modi led Government is working ceaselessly to combat this battle and seek triumph over it. Thus, organizations like WHO were in praise of the Modi government and termed India’s commitment to combat the virus as ‘impressive’. Even Bill Gates while comparing the fight against coronavirus to World war praises his leadership in the battle of COVID-19 who took proactive measures to flatten the curve of infection rate. Also, Switzerland’s most famous mountain Matterhon lit up the glorious Indian tricolour with a message of solidarity and hope and a salute to the stout-hearted spirit of 130 crore Indians. With rapid testing, strengthening the healthcare system, promoting R&D, India has indeed set a precedent for other countries to look up to.
Serving with the Motto of “Sarve Bhavantu Sukhinah”
India, while seeking to win this battle selflessly helped all those she could to unitedly defeat the virus that has indeed affected the very existence of mankind. First instance of the compassionate spirit of India was seen on 15th March 2020 when the PM while video conferencing with the SAARC leader proposed a SAARC COVID-19 EMERGENCY FUNDS and pledged initially $10 million for the same. It was indeed an applauding initiative taken by our Prime Minister which clearly proves his and the government’s love for humanity and to promote regional cooperation amongst the neighbours.
Second instance of kindheartedness was seen when the Modi government lifted the ban on the export hydroxychloroquine drug, which along with several other treatments was seen as a potential solution to the coronavirus. India holds almost 70% of the world’s global capacity of the drug. Since we’ve got the drug in abundance we decided that why should we not help other countries, and as a true Indian, where helping runs in the veins of each individual, the government decided to export the drug to more than 40 countries amidst the worldwide scare of the pandemic. Countries ranging from the United States to Russia, the government has indeed come on the forefront to help those in need of the virus, and Modi like a true leader strengthened the ties between India and other countries which will help in the long run.
VIRUS AND THE PATH AHEAD
PM Modi has come live on Maan Ki Baat and also appreciated the spirits of people while addressing several concerns that were floating around. The BJP government has come up to be a true party that all other parties can look up to. Organisations like the RSS have also come at the forefront to fight the pandemic as they are providing lakhs of people with food every day.
To conclude, India’s fight against this pandemic under the leadership of PM Narendra Modi can be summarized in the following 9 points: –
1)Adopting a national lock-down
2) Expanding focused testing
3) To identify hotspots
4) Isolation, quarantining, & care
5) Significantly increasing health expenditures
6) To strengthen the health system response
7) Promoting Research and Development
8) Digital innovation.
9) Assisting the world to fight COVID-19
(Writer is a faculty, Law Centre, University of Delhi, & Public Policy Expert. Views are personal. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org)