It’s normal to see people queue at fast-food restaurants or service centres to buy or register for something but the new normal is to queue for burying loved ones. And India is at the forefront of this new normal.
India was almost sighing in relief believing the worst of the pandemic was over only to be slapped in the face with a new outbreak. Hospital staff and beds are overwhelmed to full capacity yet the infected continuously flood in in numbers. The latest shortage to hit the already Covid-stricken and frail health system is the shortage of oxygen.
One man’s wife died while being transported to the hospital when the oxygen tank emptied out. A girl lost her brother upon arrival at the hospital under the same circumstance and more deaths are recorded daily.
Cremation homes are holding up on thin threads. Workers say they are unable to take breaks, not with the request numbers.
Speaking to an interviewer, a teary young man brokenly narrated how his just retired 59-year-old mother succumbed to the virus. Not only did he have to perform the pyre rituals alone without the customary presence of family members, but had to wait for 16 hours for his turn.
Can India’s current crises be blamed on careless plasticity in safety protocols after just a momentary of relief in subsiding numbers of infected persons? And what are other countries learning from this experience? Ghana, for instance, Covid -19 is almost a forgotten phenomena. People hardly wear protective face masks, hand washing stands are not as everywhere as they used to be and there is less talk of it among people or even in the media.
By Jamila Abdul Wahab Follow on Twitter @activetvgh