Second wave, another shaking

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After passing a year of anxiety, loss, and deaths in 2020, another wave has taken everything in its grip. The world is again stormed by another severe wave of Coronavirus—which is by now causing a catastrophe in and around the world. It has left the world in a chaotic situation—making it difficult to meet the challenge.

The videos circulated virally on social media from different states of India have frightened common public, adding to panic. Covid patients have been seen dying in hospital wards and corridors, parks and even in private cars, due to lack of oxygen. India has surpassed the grim milestone of more than two lack of deaths caused by the Covid-19. With the second wave jolting major states like Delhi, Maharashtra and Ahmedabad, Utter Pradesh etc., hospital across the country are reporting a shortage of beds, oxygen and other necessary equipment. Even crematoriums are running short of space, with funerals held in parking slots—a cathartic situation when the families cannot dream of proper last rites to their beloved ones. A large number of terrifying videos and pictures on social media are emerging from across the country.

The second wave of the pandemic has been more devastating than the first. It has also appeared to be different from last year’s surge in several ways, increasing worries and anxiety; younger ones are getting more infected than last year, and deaths are increasing. A horrible situation is prevailing. According to experts double or triple mutant strain of Covid is adding to the infected and also to the deaths.  If not dealt with strictly, it can trigger more trouble in the coming weeks.

At present infection is spreading at a faster rate in every age group, and the same is the case of mortality. Dr Trupti Giladi’s, a Mumbai based doctor, emotional five minute and thirty-two-second video last week, wearing a green uniform had gone viral. She cries; “don’t think you are the super-hero”; this has  left the netizens in a shock. While fighting back her tears, she said “ we are so helpless”.

A year of the rattling deaths has turned everything upside down. Even in these times of technological development—the man seems helpless, though he could struggle as always. Even the specialists, experts and doctors have no certain remedy except vaccine, just a few general things would help in mitigating it all. A person in a circulated video cries aloud: “I have everything, I have money, but I cannot save my sister’, such cases of abject helplessness are many.

The warriors called doctors, para-medical staff, nurses, personnel on emergency duties etc. are fighting the battle with all vigour. However, they need public support to minimize and stop it from escalating. It is an unprecedented situation; hospitals are running short of oxygen, patients are dying on floors of hospitals and even in ambulances waiting eagerly for a dose of oxygen.

The need of the hour is to get united and fight;  a mask, small distance, cleaning of hands etc.—are some micro efforts from an individual that may work as a miracle in this hour of crisis. Stop it now, otherwise, it may lead to some uncontrollable situation, where one could only regret.

Everyone can play a role to mitigate the effect of this pandemic. Pray and, follow the necessary precautions, so that it may not escalate.

Stay safe—say goodbye to the virus.

AHSAN UL HAQ is a doctoral fellow at the English department—University of Kashmir.