FlippED is an ED Original style wherein two bloggers come together to share their opposing or orthogonal perspectives on an interesting subject.

Blogger Urmi Khasnobish’s view –

I wanted to speak for social distancing which can stop the outspread of coronavirus. But who will take responsibility of the deaths of daily wagers? Who will ensure food for all if lockdown gets extended for one more month?

While scientists are asking the world to accept social distancing as the ‘new normal’ – I would like to tell you what really happened in the last few months because of COVID-19 which has pushed the world to survive in isolation. 

The economy is in trouble

Starting from the travel industry, hotel industry, restaurants to the education industry – all have gone for a toss because of COVID-19. Tons of people have already lost their jobs.

While the financially privileged people are busy preparing dalgona coffee, the lower-middle-class families are trying to understand how to pay the house rent and EMIs as half of the companies from these industries had asked their employees either to resign or forced them to take unpaid leaves.

We can give a loud shout-out to ‘social distancing’ but this strategy will not work well in the long run if scientists cannot come up with the vaccine of COVID-19 soon.

Hunger kills more than corona

If I just neutrally talk about India, we can see what exactly is happening with the daily wagers and the migrant workers.

First, they had lost their jobs because of the announcement of lockdown. Migrant workers were stuck in different places across the country without food, shelter and money.

While they were (and still are) trying to go back to their native places, they faced and still are facing extreme consequences like death from hunger. If this goes on for a longer period of time, hunger will kill more than corona. 

Mindful precaution is the need of the hour

Instead of asking for a further prolonged period of social distancing, we need to understand how to stay safe during this crisis even if we get the opportunity to get back to normal life.

As long as there is no vaccine coming up to combat COVID-19, we have to live alongside COVID-19. So, we need to be really careful about our immune system.

Following a healthy diet, doing proper exercises, taking care of regular sanitization, etc can work as precautions against the virus.

Children and elderly people probably can still follow the norms of social distancing for a few more days but to save the working class, we need to get back to normal life.

Read: Which Photographs Won The 3 Indians Pulitzer Prizes For Kashmir Coverage?

Blogger Paridhi Sehgal’s view –

A relaxation of lockdown could trigger a second wave of infection and overwhelm the health workers.

Not just India, but the world is not prepared for a pandemic of this size, this proportion. The only way we can contain this, in my opinion, is to restrain from reopening of our social, economic and political milieu.

Normalising completely after the lockdown is not a viable option if we wish to remove coronavirus from its roots. Only people in the age group of 15-55 should take this risk and carry on with their mundane tasks.

WHO on the importance of lockdown

The World Health Organization had last month called lockdown measures as the creation of a “second window of opportunity” to contain the virus and warned that early lifting of restriction may cause its resurgence. “We call on all countries who have introduced so-called ‘lockdown’ measures to use this time to attack the virus,” said Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the WHO.

“These measures are the best way to suppress and stop transmission so that when restrictions are lifted, the virus doesn’t resurge. The last thing any country needs is to open schools and businesses, only to be forced to close them again because of a resurgence,” WHO cautioned the administrative heads of various countries.

We thus, can’t allow the government to be moved by the people who undermine the value of lockdown and cry over economic losses. Bad decisions about the lockdown may prove detrimental in the future. 

Social distancing is not an option but a necessity. One must never wrongly prioritize finance over health. Such an approach to public health and welfare is fraudulent in nature. Always remember, “Health is wealth”.

Social distancing is a must

Social distancing is the best way to prevent the spread of COVID-19 illness. It slows down the transmission of this fatal respiratory illness.

It is important to allow office employees to work from home and have meetings virtually. Apart from outdoor works like construction, landscaping etc, schools, colleges, retail shops of accessories and clothes need to stay closed for some more time.

Outdoor sports and fitness activities in groups should not be allowed as well for the upcoming few months. Organizing or attending a stadium event, concert or theatre should be a big ‘no’ till scientists come up with a certified vaccine for COVID-19 and it is readily available for consumption by masses.

Vigilance is the key to safety

Even if the lockdown gets suspended, we must not forget to wash our hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds and avoid touching the face often. Wearing a mask and gloves, carrying a bottle of sanitizer etc need to be followed properly.

People must not spit in public or touch anything unnecessarily. We should try to avoid social gatherings and using public transport at all costs. It is important to remember that our safety lies in our own hands. 

Right now, it is debatable if we should get back to our normal life or follow strict social distancing. Different opinions presented in this blog are backed up by their own facts. We know that the government along with its various intelligence agencies are trying to take actions that are best for the nation. Now, we need to wait and watch.

Image Source: Google Image

Content Source: Science Daily, News18, WHO

Find the blogger: @UrmiKhasnobish

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