Skip to main content

Lockdown: Combatting misinformation from WhatsApp university, other media

By Rohit Prajapati*
Lockdown. Lockdown is a statement in it itself. It encompasses strategies, methods, time-period, plans, and tools for helping and managing people’s behaviour in such extreme situations in a country, state, or other units of governments. From locking a house to businesses, to industries to neighbourhoods, and even to the entire state or country, there is a different way to go about implementing lockdown in each of them.
Each situation presents its own peculiarities to achieve the main goals of a lockdown and to prevent chaotic situations and panic. Each situation requires its own detailed short and long-term plan, well-thought strategies including fall-back plans based on various “what-if” scenarios, resources, and multidisciplinary expert’s teamwork.
Review of the ground level information, conditions, and feedback from people at regular intervals are also very crucial and a must. Try experiencing the Lockdown with an empty stomach, and uncertainty not for one day but for coming months. We the People -- at Home, without Home on Footpaths, Migrants, Workers of Informal Sector, Self-Employed, Unemployed, Underemployed -- Belong to Different Castes, Religions and Class; each one facing common but distinct problems in the times of Covid-2019.
Adhoc imposition of Lockdown, Partial Lifting of Lockdown and Complete Lifting of Lockdown may prove to be disastrous. Adhocism in any situation is always a problem and the systems need to and can find the appropriate solutions.
Partial and complete lockdowns need to be well defined. Status and logistics of various basic services -- healthcare, education, financial services, food storage and supply (including vegetables, milk, and its products, cereal, etc), agricultural activities, the supply and handling of products required for healthcare and other essential services, police services, legal services, fire-water-sanitation, funeral services and other municipal services (water supply, sanitation, and solid waste disposal), transport services, distribution services (medicines and food in particular), news and media services, and such -- will have to be defined in partial and complete lockdown.
Guidelines for home quarantine, hospital quarantine, isolation will have to be prepared. The people engaged in different activities will have to be kept in mind, e.g. homeless people, workers of informal sector, migrant workers and their family, self-employed, domestic workers, security guards, etc.
It is time for experts with on-ground inputs and key stakeholders to initiate meaningful discussion at state and national level
This is a national crisis and the entire population is affected. Hence, there is need for an agile consultation process before taking decisions. Empty stomachs of millions of unemployed, marginalised poor people, and millions of migrant labourers who have been stranded in worksites across country, unable to return home, desperate to survive with no rations, cash and access to medical facilities, cannot be ignored.
Thus, it is quite apparent that in such a situation of a lockdown, information and its implementation needs to be a disseminated as comprehensive, coordinated, and well spelled out document, regulations that has many details. This document is not a defence secret and that is why people have a right to know about those details. These short-term and long-term details should be worked out with inputs from the grass-root stakeholders and should be announced in a timely manner.
This will help minimise the anxiety of all the concerned people, including the emergency service works of all types and those who are affected by it physically, mentally, socially, and financially. If the people do not have apprehension because of lack of information, lockdown will be very effective in terms of its implementation and desired outcomes.
It provides the ground for a meaningful discussion in right direction to make it more effective and transparent. In all this process, transparency and open and timely communication are very crucial. They help us to plan for partial lifting and even complete lifting of a lockdown with possibly most positive results.
It is time for experts to initiate a meaningful discussion on this issue at state and national level. It is time for experts with the inputs of on-ground personnel and key stakeholders to initiate a meaningful discussion on this issue at state and national levels and help minimise the misinformation from “WhatsApp University” and other media.
---
*Environment activist, researcher and writer

Comments

TRENDING

New Odia CM's tribal heritage 'sets him apart' from Hindutva Brahminical norms

By Bhabani Shankar Nayak*  Mohan Charan Majhi took the oath as the new Chief Minister of Odisha following the electoral defeat of the BJD led by Naveen Patnaik, who served as Chief Minister for twenty-four years. The new Chief Minister is the son of a security guard and a four-time MLA who hails from the remote village of Raikala in the Keonjhar district. He belongs to the Santali tribe and comes from a working-class family. Such achievements and political mobilities are possible only in a democratic society. Majhi’s leadership even in the form of symbolic representation in a democracy deserves celebration.

Sanction to persecute Arundhati Roy under UAPA politically motivated: PUCL

Counterview Network  Top human rights group, People’s Union for Civil Liberties, has demanded that the authorities should immediately withdraw the prosecution against top author Arundhati Roy and Dr Sheikh Showkat Hussain, a Kashmir academic, under the " unconstitutional"  Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act  (UAPA), calling the Delhi  Lieutenant-Governor nod for the Delhi police move "politically motivated".

What stops Kavach? Why no time to focus on common trains meant for common people?

By Atanu Roy  A goods train rammed into Kanchenjunga Express on 17th June morning in North Bengal. This could have been averted if the time tested anti-collision system (Kavach) was in place. 

AMR: A gathering storm that threatens a century of progress in medicine

By Bobby Ramakant*  A strategic roundtable on “Charting a new path forward for global action against Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR)” was organised at the 77th World Health Assembly or WHA (WHA is the apex decision-making body of the World Health Organization – WHO, which is attended by all countries that are part of the WHO – a United Nations health agency). AMR is among the top-10 global health threats “Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) is a growing and urgent crisis which is already a leading cause of untimely deaths globally. More than 2 people die of AMR every single minute,” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director General of the WHO. “AMR threatens to unwind centuries of progress in human health, animal health, and other sectors.”

A Hindu alternative to Valentine's Day? 'Shiv-Parvati was first love marriage in Universe'

By Rajiv Shah*   The other day, I was searching on Google a quote on Maha Shivratri which I wanted to send to someone, a confirmed Shiv Bhakt, quite close to me -- with an underlying message to act positively instead of being negative. On top of the search, I chanced upon an article in, imagine!, a Nashik Corporation site which offered me something very unusual. 

Lip-service on World Environment Day vs 'watered-down' eco-safeguards

By Shankar Sharma*  Just a few days ago, the world remembered the routinely forgotten global environment on the occasion of World Environment Day, briefly though, maybe just for the day. There were reports of a few high profile ceremonies in different parts of the country, including a few in New Delhi. Prime Minister Narendra Modi reportedly asked the people of our country to plant one tree per each person as a mark of respect/ gratitude for our mothers.

Swami Vivekananda's views on caste and sexuality were 'painfully' regressive

By Bhaskar Sur* Swami Vivekananda now belongs more to the modern Hindu mythology than reality. It makes a daunting job to discover the real human being who knew unemployment, humiliation of losing a teaching job for 'incompetence', longed in vain for the bliss of a happy conjugal life only to suffer the consequent frustration.