I love both The Dark and The Light, Evil and Angel, Good as well as Bad, because they all are incomplete without each other!
It’s Friday evening and after an excruciating week, as I just sit to relax and chill, a few random thoughts come to my mind. These are:
(1) As India overtakes Spain in number of deaths and stands at third position behind US and Brazil in total number of Covid cases, the country is unlocking slowly. Number of people on the streets, vehicles on the roads, shops open, offices gradually opening, sale of cars and bikes going up and several other activities almost touching pre Covid levels is a great dilemma, very hard to explain. When there were few cases, we were under strict lockdown ! Now that pandemic is peaking and so are deaths, we are trying to be going back to normal!
(2) Oxford vaccine is now getting into phase 3 trial, while as I am writing this blog, I understand our own Covaxin ( under the auspices of ICMR) has been administered to a patient in AIIMS and as last heard, so far there has been no side reaction. Is effective vaccine really about to be mass produced shortly and we are all going to be vaccinated over the next 3-4 months to be Covid proof?
(3) India and China are talking at military leadership level, but outcomes are not very clear! It’s said that while China has moved back its forces in Galwan valley, it’s not doing so in finger region of Pangong Lake. Indian Army is stocking up for long Ladakh winters! What’s happening there?
(4) Mumbai and Eastern parts of India are receiving record rainfall. But Mumbai lakes have 29% stock of water only while devastation in Bihar is unprecedented. Government is relying on record Agri production for Indian economy to piggy ride rural recovery! But with poor and farmers at the forefront of all natural calamities, this optimism seems slightly misplaced!
(5) Pakistan’s rhetoric on Kashmir is unfazed by Corona pandemic , while Nepal’s claim on owning up real Ayodhya is only adding to the confusion on the chances of improvement in India’s relations with its neighbours in short to medium term!
(6) A well run, largely profitable and having the distinction of acquiring numero uno position in aviation sector company like Indigo is cutting its staff by 10%. I think, earlier it had cut staff salaries too. Employees contributing to reserves built up over a period of time are getting sacrificed at the altar of pandemic for no fault of theirs. This in turn is leading to loan defaults. The job market is at its nadir.
(7) A bunch of Kerala doctors working in Mumbai decided to go back on not being paid salaries. There are several health workers, teachers and other government/semi government employees not getting salaries regularly! How will their kitchens run?
(8) Price of gold has crossed Rs50000 per 10 grams and interest rates on deposits are now hovering around 6% level. With 35% tax on interest, the return on deposits are proving to be too meagre for pensioners depending on this for survival!
(9) I haven’t touched a physical news paper for 4 months and am reading e papers, solving Sudoku and crossword in my register, which is very inconvenient !
(10) I am dying to go to my favourite South Indian restaurant at Matunga for my staple of idli, dosa, vada and thali! Don’t know when will I have all these?
The crux is that even in randomness, Corona is not sparing! It’s made such a deep impact on our psyche that while all our considered thoughts hover around it, it dominates even our random thoughts! Hope our country, businesses, rural economy, health sector and above all citizens, especially those who have struggled for food, jobs, livelihood during these Covid times show resilience to survive this to see the golden future that will come back for sure! Don’t miss the thought stated in bold italics at the beginning of this article! Without pandemic, we wouldn’t have valued our normal life!