India’s Vaccination Story!
Imagine a hypothetical scenario — that the COVID vaccines were not made in India and were to be imported. While you are at it, also imagine #BJP not in power and some other “coalition-friendly” party was in power!
Since these are imaginary scenarios, one could think of any possibility. I being me… will imagine the following…
Firstly, the Govt. goofs up in procuring the vaccines on time. The lethargy in Govt. leads to protests, prodding the Govt. to buy vaccines from sources where they do not have any negotiating power. Without a proper distribution mechanism in place, there’s a high percentage of wastage in procured vaccines. The “working” vaccines gets into cold-storage of “rich” hospital chains. The “non-working” vaccines makes way to govt. hospitals. The huge queues to get those non-working vaccines topped with no online way of booking vaccine appointments makes the headlines. The elderly end up making daily trips to the hospitals risking their own health and getting frustrated in turn. “this is how is has been, this is how it is going to be” will be the everyday chatting point of the NRIs making nervous calls to their parents in India.
My imagination continues to run wild. The queues and waiting times leads to people trying to jump the lines by bribing the hospital attendants. The Govt. continues to be clueless as to how to handle the situation and getting international pressure to be more responsible towards its citizens! Govt. blames the coalition to jeopardise decision making and then there are “negotiators” within the Govt. to “equitably” distribute the vaccines within the coalition partner’s stronghold territories, so that they can go ask for votes next time around!
Could this have been a reality? No way to tell, right?
It may not have been that worse. But we have seen in our lifetimes on how we got our first driving licenses; how much time and effort we spent in getting our first passports; how the Govt. hospitals gave the health certificates (when applying for a Govt. job); how the rations were/are distributed in the villages; how the liquor bans are implemented even today!
So, having seen the past and seeing the current vaccination drive that is going on so successfully, it is but natural to analyse what has changed.
The Govt. did not come up with the vaccine — it is the Indian scientists who came up with it.
The Govt. did not come up with new hospitals or health care centres — they made use of the existing facilities.
The Govt. did not invent new ways of transporting those vaccines — they existed from ages.
The Govt. did not force people to get vaccinated — it only generated the required confidence.
In all of what is happening in the current vaccination drive, all that the Govt. had to do was to create the right mechanisms for vaccine invention, mass production, distribution and administration — and it seem to have done exactly that — in a PERFECT manner!
The COVID cases are on the rise. The second wave is imminent. Careless attitude will still cost lives. COVID is far from over. But the year that has gone by is a testimony for the Govt.’s intent and decisive actions.
Be it stringent lockdowns, phased lifting of lockdowns, communication and reaching out to the masses, this Govt. has ticked all the right boxes when it comes to handling COVID.
I know it would appear a fan-boy post on #Modi … happy to be trashed as a #Bhakt, but the fact remains that our elderly and front line workers are more happier today than the entire last year and its now a matter of time before COVID gets into text books and remains just in our memories!