The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared corona virus a pandemic. Originating from Wuhan in China, it has traversed the entire globe, almost, and claimed more than 16,000 lives already. That’s largely the urban population. In India, despite all the preparedness and war-like promptness to safeguard against the pandemic, several lives have been lost , and hundreds of individuals have tested positive.
While lockdown continues to keep everyone inside their homes, apprehension is on the rise as in how many are still there with the deadly infection who yet to be detected. India has a larger concern to worry about. Its population size and density vis-a-vis the level of general awareness, preparedness and facilities available to treat an ailing section just does not matchup. There are only 40,000 ventilators for a 1.3 billion population!
Rural India is thankfully still not much affected by this outbreak. But that is no reason to relax. We are at a crucial juncture to organise millions of villagers of the subcontinent. One of the biggest challenges in remote rural areas, apart from inadequate corona virus healthcare facilities at their doorsteps, is their lack of awareness about the pandemic and what all measures are essential to keep one safe and secure in this situation.
At the same time, it is from the rural areas that most of India’s daily wage earners and labours migrate to urban areas. At this time of crisis, when these labourers will start moving back to their own villages, it might so happen that some of them will carry the virulent disease in their bodies.