Editorial

Bent on lockdown

By Nagaland Post | Publish Date: 7/24/2020 2:18:46 PM IST

 Clamour among public for imposing total lockdown in Kohima and Dimapur arose after more COVID-19 cases were reported even as the state’s tally surpassed 1200-mark as on July 24. In Kohima, fresh cases of COVID-19 were confirmed from those not involved with measures to contain COVID-19 and not having contacts with quarantine inmates. After having rejected the request for a total lockdown in Kohima and similar situation arising in Dimapur, the state level High Powered Committee(HPC) headed by the chief minister eventually allowed the District Task Force of Dimapur and Kohima to decide. In Kohima, the All Kohima Municipal Wards Panchayat(AKMWP) had urged upon the district task force to impose total lockdown but the latter’s recommendation to the HPC was rejected. The AKMWP had warned that if the state or district authorities failed to accede to its demands within five days(w.e.f July 21,2020) then it will, along with all wards under the municipality, impose lockdown . HPC passed the buck at the district task forces. On July 23, both Kohima and Dimapur district task force announced lockdowns on varying dates. While in Kohima the lockdown will be for seven days from July 25 to July 31; in Dimapur the lockdown will be for 8 days from July 26 to August 2,2020. The objective of a lockdown is to enforce preventive measures that make people remain where they are and not leave their areas for another area within the period as specified by authorities. Lockdowns have been implemented throughout the world with varying degrees, depending on the understanding of the situation. However, lockdown on its own has not succeeded in breaking the transmission chain. This can be seen in India which is on day 122 of the nationwide lockdown as on July 24. The lockdown from March 24 when the number of covid cases was 564 has been multiplying. Today the virus has reached 13,37,021 and it continues to rise alarmingly across India. Pharmaceutical giants across the world are frantically searching for a vaccine to halt coronavirus infections. However, till then, even lockdowns involving stopping movement of people etc will not help. What should be understood is that unless there is more testing to ascertain the near-exact number of COVID-19 cases, it will be meaningless to indulge in shooting in the dark. Despite lockdown, not many states in India have gone further than mere tokenism. Like a patient who is first sedated before surgery, a lockdown is somewhat similar; it prepares for vigorous contact tracing and voluntary testing of those showing symptoms of COVID-19. To suppress their epidemics to manageable levels, countries around the world have turned to contact tracing - tracking down people who might have been exposed to the coronavirus to ensure they don’t pass it to others, a way of stalking routes of viral spread and severing them before they reach more people. Effective contact tracing demands more people, more money and more time. The COVID-19 graph continues to show a stiff climb while the so-called ‘curve’ exists only in the minds of the proponents. Indeed COVID-19 is only beginning to show how destructive it can be. Many health experts especially immunologists, virologists and epidemiologists have said that the COVID-19 war should be handled by professionals- like generals leading the army- and not politicians and bureaucrats. This is perhaps the problem for the confusion.

Launched on December 3,1990. Nagaland Post is the first and highest circulated newspaper of Nagaland state. Nagaland Post is also the first newspaper in Nagaland to be published in multi-colour.

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