BENGALURU: I look forward to this weekly tête-a-tête with you guys, as pacing like a caged tigress in my home can sometimes bring out the worst in me. I realise that too much time to think is not as stimulating as it is made out to be. I am generally a home-body (I can literally see some reader’s eye-brows go up), but it doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy the company and the exhilaration of being amongst good friends.
I read many posts (lockdown woes) of people cribbing about their friends circle dwindling during the onslaught of Cardi-V — but seriously, friendship is a two way street. The moment ones ego or ID gets into the equation then you know you are in trouble. I have 8 or 9 close friends for years now. I have added a couple on the way but never subtracted any . Some are close and others closer…but they all get a phone call from me irrespective of whether they call or not.
I was speaking to a friend on the phone and the topic veered to the present ‘quasi-lockdown’ situation that has been imposed on our city. The containment areas are reporting high numbers because of domestic travel. Well, the sad part is that there are certain places from where one needs to show a RT-PCR certificate to enter our ooru. But whole hordes of travellers are going up and down without showing squat. When I returned from Mumbai (where producing a Covid-negative certification is mandatory, even if one is double-vaccinated), I could have shown my neighbour’s certificate for the perfunctory check that happened. This is where our own responsibility and integrity kicks in. Why must we be monitored all the time? The idea is not feeling gleeful breaking the rules and boasting about finding loopholes, but doing ones bit as a responsible citizen and obeying them.
A friend recently picked up another friend and drove her to the airport. This friend landed in Surat and tested positive! I’m baffled. Didn’t she have to produce a certificate? How does a single person be in the position to infect so many people? The home she stayed at, the airport personnel in Bengaluru and Surat and a plane load of unsuspecting passengers, most of whom were children! Why aren’t tests a pre-requisite to travel by air, train, buses or bullock-carts, especially since we are aware that the new strain is so virulent and transmissible in spite of being double vaccinated and taking a booster?
On a work con-call, a couple of us were making pointers for a seminar where one of the key topics was self-regulation, personal integrity and the true interpretation of the word responsibility. Quite organically what came up pretty strongly was the fact that so many people chose not be vaccinated in a pandemic which had global repercussions. I wasn’t prepared from the virulent backlash that came from two of the unvaccinated panelists. In fact, one of them had a daughter in the ICU and was struggling to breathe! She actually said, believe me I was blindsided, that it was a calculated risk they chose to take against the unholy nexus between the powers and the pharmaceutical companies committed to spreading panic and injecting ‘un-tested’ poisons in our systems!
I thought long and hard about her choices and many like her and wondered what angered me about them. We always trusted ‘science’ and other than a few slip-ups it always worked and protected us. Mutations happen when the non-vaccinated are infected and reside in an unprotected host-body for months. Non-vaccinated people don’t allow us to close the loop of infections ultimately weakening the virus. Even now, it’s the non-believers who are occupying the hospital beds. We too have loved ones and children who are doctors/health-care professionals treating you and getting re-infected. Don’t we have a choice… a choice to choose life?
(The writer’s views are her own)