Dr Mudasir Ahmad Gori
There is news and then there is nuisance. While the whole world is engaged in tackling this deadly coronavirus, not only in India but around the world human stupidity with regard to Covid-19 has resulted in many deaths. Almost fifty people were inflected at a church in South Korea after a church official spread salt water into the mouth of worshipers, believing that it will kill the virus. In India, the Hindu Mahasabha did not lag behind. Their stupidity encouraged a person in Bengal to set up a stall to sell cow urine for five hundred rupees a litre and one kilogram of cow dung for five hundred rupees. He sold these things as a cure for coronavirus. This man claimed that he was motivated by profit. In yet another bizarre episode, a BJP activist was arrested for throwing a party where cow urine was drunk. One of the drinkers reportedly fell ill soon after the party ended. When the media around the world is doing their part to create awareness among the masses, the Godi media is engaged in highlighting their favourite buzz words on their shows. The pick of such buzzwords are: Pakistan, Opposition, JNU, and the latest, Shaheen Bagh. If the economy is going down, blame it on JNU, if the BJP is losing in Delhi, call it a conspiracy of Shaheen Bagh, and any terror attack that happens, call it an attempt by Pakistan to break the country. With this newly arrived Covid-19 it was felt that the discourse will shift to necessary precautions, but the media began to decry Shaheen Bagh and claimed that it was more deadly than the coronavirus. These self-proclaimed champions of the nation warned that people sitting in Shaheen Bah-like gatherings were intentionally trying to devastate the country by spreading the virus. Not that I support social gatherings during this epidemic, and I agree that social distancing is the way to save lives, but calling Shaheen Bagh as “anti-India and anti-Hindu and money guzzling and opportunistic” is something that people in general will not buy.
One is wonderstruck at the stupidity that people have shown while beating thaalis and accompanying it with taalis. How is this going to help us? While other countries are taking every possible measure to ensure that the deadly Covid-19 is stopped from any further expansion, our andhbhakts are drilling tin drums like anything. They think the virus is a demon that will be driven away by such banging and chanting.
It is high time to turn to sanity and take all necessary precautions. Wash your hands with soap, maintain social distance, use masks, avoid going to social gatherings, and above all, stay at home or rest in peace.
The writer is currently teaching at MANUU and can be reached at [email protected]