Monday, 25 October, 2021

Stop reckless cross-country movements

There is an alarming rise in occupancy of general and ICU beds in Covid-19 units and hospitals across the country, to the extent that hospitals are now overwhelmed with corona patients. This is mainly due to the fact that people have been found to be very reluctant to comply with the health safety directives of the government during the ongoing countrywide lockdown.

As a result of the recent surge in infections, the government has decided to prolong the ‘strict lockdown’ to August 10. We doubt that prolonging the so-called strict lockdown for a few more days will be of much help. If people continue to wantonly thwart the health protocols, lockdowns will not be very effective in reducing infections in the country. Rather, people have carried the virus from the cities to the villages when they went home during this lockdown period. What was needed was to prevent people from moving from one place to another carrying the virus and spreading it all over the countryside.

Although in the initial days of Covid-19 outbreak, working class people in the country apparently seemed to be more or less immune to the coronavirus infection. Their surprising apparent immunity made many of them careless about maintaining health safety protocols. Many claimed that Covid-19 was a ‘rich man’s disease’. Their surmise was founded on the fact that in 2020, unfortunately, many elites of the country got infected and succumbed to the disease despite maintaining health protocols. Most of them may have been infected by their household staffs, who were perhaps asymptomatic carriers of the disease.

The current delta variant of Covid-19, which is fast spreading across the country, is many times more infectious and deadlier than the previous strains of the bug. Moreover, the delta variant is not affecting only a particular class of people; rather, now a large number of working class people and village folks are getting infected and rushing to the cities for treatment.

To stop spreading the delta variant, people must be prevented from travelling from one place to another within Bangladesh. Remember, humans are carriers of the deadly virus. Therefore, only stopping the movement of people within the country can prevent spreading delta any further.