A Megalomaniac and his kingdom

By Shakir Alam Mazumder

“It can be said with the pride, India defeated Covid-19 under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The party hails its leadership for introducing India to the World as a proud and victorious nation in the fight against Covid-19.” These are the words of ruling party BJP in February 2021 before the second wave of Covid-19 hit the country making it the second worst affected country after USA.

If Modi took the credits to handle the first wave of coronavirus, shouldn’t he and his government be blamed for what we are facing today? Trails of pyres, people dying outside hospitals, family members desperately searching for oxygen cylinders for their loved ones, patients dying after the shortage of oxygen supply. This is the situation of India which is among one of the Covid-19 vaccine manufacturers. India has also exported millions of vaccine doses before even vaccinating its own people. The country is facing shortage of vaccine doses in its third phase of vaccination of the age group 18 to 44 years. Has the government miscalculated the demand?  Whereas it’s neighboring country Bhutan has vaccinated majority of its population. Its Prime Minister has self-isolated himself for 21 days following an official trip to Bangladesh.

The first case of covid-19 was detected in January 2020 but instead of ramping up healthcare facilities, Modi preferred to gather lakhs of people in Donald Trump’s visit to India in February last year. In this trying time, when migrant workers are forced to leave, centre  has decided to build a new Parliament House, a new residence for the PM and office for the Vice President and a Central Secretariat housing all the ministries. The project will cost around Rs 20,000 crore. The existing Parliament House which is not even a century old and is in a good condition will be turned into a museum. On the other hand, in the same state, parking lots and parks are used to cremate dead bodies after the surge of Covid-19 cases.  What should be the country’s priorities today? The capital state is gasping for medical oxygen on the other hand; a huge amount of public money is being spent on building lavish houses for politicians. These politicians even during this pandemic were doing election rallies and public meetings with large gatherings risking so many lives. While the other countries have cancelled major events such as the Tokyo Olympics, India allowed the country’s biggest religious gatherings, the Maha Kumbh where lakhs of devotees took part in. Even the Prime Minister himself boasted the large gatherings in his election rallies. In fact, in one of his rallies in West Bengal, he expressed his gratitude saying that he had never seen such huge crowds in the rally. In mid-March, the cricket board allowed 130,000 fans, to watch two international game in a stadium renamed after PM Narendra Modi. Yogi Adityanath, the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh recently claimed that there is no shortage of medical oxygen in the state and that action will be taken against hospitals for spreading rumors. This claim comes at a time when hospitals are turning away patients because of lack of oxygen supply.  The national vice-president of the Indian Medical Association (IMA)Dr. Navjot Dahiya had called Narendra Modi as ‘super spreader’ of Covid-19 and blamed for the second wave of Covid-19. Australia has banned its residents and citizens who have been in India within 14 days of the date they plan to return home from entering Australia. Majority of Indians see Modi as a messiah who is here to take away all their miseries.

The slogan “Modi hai toh munkin hai” (“If Modi is there, anything is possible”) still resonates with them. This is why when Modi asked people to light diyas and bang thalis, they were convinced that Modi could deal with the virus keeping them safe.In democracies, governments are hold accountable when actions go wrong but here this government is setting different precedent by censoring criticism which questions their governance. Facebook and Twitter has taken  down thousands of posts showing the mismanagement of situation after the Centre  said that it maligns India’s Covid handling situation.India is reporting over four lakhs daily cases and it is high time for the government to act and take serious actions instead of being in a denial mode that India is doing far better than other countries in handling the pandemic.

Photo credit : Kashmir Walla

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India received 17 consignments of medical aid from nations to battle Covid surge

Between April 24 and May 2, India has received 17 consignments – comprising essential medical equipment such as oxygen concentrators, cylinders of medical oxygen, ventilators and BiPAP machines, bedside monitors, anti-viral drugs, rapid kits to detect Covid-19 virus, pulse oximeters, N95 masks and personal protective equipment among others — from at least 14 countries.

The Centre on Tuesday prepared an exhaustive list of consignments of medical equipment that India has received from different nations amid spiraling surge in coronavirus disease cases.

The government said between April 24 and May 2, India has received 17 consignments – comprising of essential medical equipment such as oxygen concentrators, cylinders of medical oxygen, ventilators and BiPAP machines, bedside monitors, anti-viral drugs, rapid kits to detect Covid-19 virus, pulse oximeters, N95 masks and personal protective equipment among others -- from 14 countries.

The United Kingdom was the first to rush its consignment to India on April 24, where it sent 95 oxygen concentrators, 20 Lumis BiPAP machines, 20 ventilators and allied equipment. They were sent to various hospitals in the national capital.


The aid continued to flow in. Singapore was the next nation to send 256 oxygen cylinders on May 28, at a time when both government-run and private hospitals across the country reported shortages in supply of medical oxygen to critical patients.

Government officials aware of the developments said the oxygen concentrators from Singapore were uniformly distributed among All India Institute of Medical Science in Bhubaneswar, Patna, Raipur and Ranchi.

Russia, too, extended help to India by sending oxygen concentrators, lung ventilators, bedside monitors and at least 200,000 packs of anti-viral drug Favipiravir, used to treat symptoms related to the coronavirus disease.

Even countries like Romania sent at least 75 oxygen cylinders and 80 oxygen concentrators, which helped hospitals in Delhi such as Lady Hardinge, Safdarjung and Aiims Jhajhhar, data shared by the government shows.

Some of the other counties that have helped India in times of its crisis are the United States, UAE, Ireland, Thailand, Germany, France, Uzbekistan and Taiwan.

The biggest consignment that India has received so far are from the US and United Arab Emirates. The US sent 714,301 rapid detection kits, 125,000 Remdesivir vials, 994,800 N95 masks apart from oxygen cylinders in two separate consignments while the UAE rushed in 480 ventilators, 170,7600 masks and hundreds and thousands of PPE kits, the data reveals.

COVID-19: Daily deaths over 300 for first time this year, 62,714 new cases

New Delhi, Mar 28 :  India saw 62,714 new coronavirus infections in a day, the highest single day rise so far this year, taking the nationwide COVID-19 tally to 1,19,71,624, while the daily deaths crossed the 300-mark for the first time in 2021, according to the Union Health Ministry data updated on Sunday.

Registering a steady increase for the 18th day in row, active cases have increased to 4,86,310 comprising 4.06 per cent of the total infections. The recovery rate has further dropped to 94.58 per cent, the data stated

The 62,714 new cases were reported in a span of 24 hours, the highest since October 16, 2020, while the death toll increased to 1,61,552 with 312 daily new fatalities, the highest in around three months, the data updated at 8 am showed

The daily death toll of 312 is the highest since December 25, 2020 when 336 new deaths were reported

As many as 63,371 new infections were recorded in a span of 24 hours on October 16

The number of people who have recuperated from the disease surged to 1,13,23,762, while the case fatality rate stood at ?1.35 per cent, the data stated. ? ?

India's COVID-19 tally had crossed the 20-lakh mark on August 7, 30 lakh on August 23, 40 lakh on September 5 and 50 lakh on September 16. It went past ?60 lakh on September 28, 70 lakh on October 11, crossed 80 lakh on October 29, 90 lakh on November 20 and surpassed the one-crore mark on December 19

According to the ICMR, 24,09,50,842 samples have been tested up to March 27 with 11,81,289 samples being tested on Saturday.

The 312 new fatalities include 166 from Maharashtra, 45 from Punjab, 14 from Kerala, 13 from Chhattisgarh, and 10 from Delhi

A total of 161552 deaths have been reported so far in the country including 54073 from Maharashtra, 12659 from Tamil Nadu, 12492 from Karnataka, 10997 from Delhi, 10322 from West Bengal, 8783 from Uttar Pradesh and 7203 from Andhra Pradesh and 6621 from Punjab

The health ministry stressed that more than 70 per cent of the deaths occurred due to comorbidities

"Our figures are being reconciled with the Indian Council of Medical Research," the ministry said on its website, adding that state-wise distribution of figures is subject to further verification and reconciliation.

AssamCovidUpdate on 21/03/2021.

Media Bulletin on #Covid19 #Assam and actions taken as on 21/03/2021.

Watch Video: Sachin Tendulkar pranks medical staff while undergoing Covid-19 test

Sachin Tendulkar pulled out a prank on the medical staff at the team hotel in Raipur during a COVID-19 Test. Tendulkar, who is part of the Indian Legends team in the Road Safety World Series, had to undergo a routine coronavirus test ahead of their match against England Legends on March 09 (Tuesday). The Master Blaster decided to pull a prank on the medical staff during the Test and scared them to lighten the mood. The Road Safety Series resumed on March 5 after being halted mid-way through the tournament last year due to the pandemic.

The video starts with Tendulkar sitting to take a COVID-19 test. But as a member of the medical staff takes the nasal swab, Tendulkar screamed in pain and pretended to have got hurt before smiling. The medical staff member was initially taken aback but was relieved when Tendulkar smiled and revealed he was only acting. His prank drew a huge laugh from behind.

"I've played 200 Tests and 277 COVID Tests! A little prank to lighten the mood.😋 Kudos to our medical staff here for helping us to play for a cause!” he captioned the video. Take a look at Sachin Tendulkar’s video.

Sachin Tendulkar Pranks Medical Staff During COVID-19 Test

Sachin, who represents India Legends in Road Safety Series, will be in action on Tuesday against England Legends. Last week, Sachin scored unbeaten 33 runs off 26 balls as India Legends chased down the 110-run target in just 10.1 overs to beat Bangladesh Legends by 10 wickets.



PM Modi takes his first dose of COVID-19 vaccine at Delhi's AIIMS Watch

Prime Minister Narendra Modi took his first dose of the Covid-19 vaccine at AIIMS Delhi. "Took my first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at AIIMS," PM Modi said in a tweet.

"Remarkable how our doctors and scientists have worked in quick time to strengthen the global fight against COVID-19," PM tweeted as he shared an image of himself taking the first dose of the vaccine.

Credit. ANI

One More Detected COVID19 Positive In Assam, Total Number Reaches 28

Guwahati: The 28th COVID19 positive case of Assam has been reported in Hailakandi in the state’s Barak Valley on Tuesday.

According to the state’s Health Minister, Himanta Biswa Sarma, the infected person is from Hailakandi with a travel history to Saudi Arabia. He was tested positive on Tuesday evening.

The minister on his Twitter account wrote, “Alert , A person from Hailakandi district, with a travel history to Saudi Arabia, has been confirmed as #COVID19 positive. The total number of #Covid patients in #Assam now stands at 28.”

According to a source input, the 65-year-old man has a travel history of visiting Saudi Arab and had recently returned to Assam.

However, no information of him attending or visiting the Tablighi Jamat or Nizamuddin has yet been claimed by the government and the his source of infection or contamination is yet to be proven.

On the same day another positive case was detected in Dhubri district which took the total number of infection in Assam to 27 but as the new case was reported, the total number reached 28 and it is suspected that many more might be detected in the state as some silent carriers are yet to be traced.

The person from Dhubri had allegedly participated the Tablighi Jamaat in Nizamuddin Markaz in Delhi last month.