While the year 2019 was about to be replaced by 2020, on 31st December 2019 WHO was informed of cases of pneumonia of unknown cause in Wuhan city, China and later on 7 January, the new year, novel coronavirus was identified as the cause by Chinese authorities and was temporarily named “2019-nCOV”. The world was yet in a tremble when the deadly virus knocked on the door and pushed the people of the valley into the trauma. The Kashmir valley on March 18 2020 recorded its first positive case for the novel coronavirus in Srinagar; a resident of khanyar who was arrived on the 16th of the same month and had foreign travel history. From the same day, authorities imposed serious restrictions over the unnecessary moment of people from their respective homes as well. Though Kashmir was going to venture, in fact, went into the new political era post 5 August 2019 after the abrogation of Article 370 and 35A, so, difficult and yet another challenge knocked: Kashmir was going to test its fate once more. No one thinks ahead and serious what Kashmir was going to experience, at least not so many deaths and mourning!
Alas! After some relief, mother nature spotted its wrecked behaviour and shattered humanity again by the same virus; now mutations make it harder to control. And it shrouded the Kashmir valley as well, now, by the 2nd wave of covid.
PEOPLE, COVID AND MYTHS
In a conservative society like Kashmir where people still believe in superstitious elements and believe in magic rather than logic, where people prefer saints (pir Sahab) irrespective of a medical doctor while being confronted with any kind of diseases. In a society like this where illogicality remains dominant over logicality and where myths are considered as facts, at the same time henceforth rumours play an important role in it. The same happened with covid from the ist wave to the second wave. Usually, in a national emergency or natural disaster people and coordination make a strong and constructive bond but here in Kashmir people played like a fool and lead to ill outgrowths thereof. People choose their way of accord and desire by which they mislead own self by considering the deadly virus a joke and sometimes violated such norms which were supposed to be followed during the catastrophe. They violated the administrative orders and accorded their way of thinking which lead to misery and fallouts as a whole for all.
As the engine is to the vehicle, administration works for the state. From the beginning of the first wave of covid to the end of the second wave, administration, here in the valley does not pause to approve suspicious, most times absurd protocols to undertake the pandemic which not only boosted the mysterious nature of the virus but ended with a complete shuffle to the cards. From the backdrop of living standard to the economy of the state, from the healthcare facilities to the safety of non-covid patients, Kashmir suffered plenty. In the first wave of the pandemic, more non-covid patients died than the covid patients because they did not come out of their homes for treatment due to the fear of getting infected and non-covid patients were refused to treat at hospitals. In a recent statement issued by DAK president Dr Nisar ul Hassan who also said we need to treat every patient whether covid or non-covid with the same zeal. The government from the beginning to the pandemic failed to provide general OPD after hospitals were switched to temporary covid centres.
It is pertinent to mention here that the government of India had recently issued a warning regarding the third wave of corona disease, accordingly, logically, the government must ensure the strategies and possible ways, unlike during the first and second wave, to get the grips with and grasp the covid third wave.