Nagaland should adapt to new normal in order to progress: Metha
Kohima, September 7: With a view to spread awareness and sensitize the Angami villages on the new normal of life in the fight against COVID-19, the Angami Youth Organisation (AYO) has produced a short film entitled “Kelhouzho Kesa”.
The film was officially launched by Advisor to Chief Minister, Abu Metha during a function held following all COVID-19 safety norms at AMK Hall here in the presence of the Angami Public Organisation (APO), Angamimiapfu Mechu Krotho, Angami Students’ Union, AYO units and other Angami frontal organizations.
Congratulating AYO for the production and for leading the way in educating the society in the collective efforts towards being future-ready amidst COVID-19 pandemic, Metha appreciated all the rank and file of the AYO for coming forward in a positive manner in the common fight against the corona pandemic.
“The participation of civil society and mass based organisations in the Covid battle ensured a unified approach,” he said, adding that it exemplified the aspiration for unity and sent the right message to the outside world.
“This collective approach ensured softening of the difficulties and lightening of the overall burden,” he said.
Maintaining that the world was not prepared for coronavirus, and neither was Nagaland, Metha said the countries and the states that responded better were the ones who had an adequate healthcare system and as for us we fell short in many ways
“We just had too many holes to plug… too many fires to fight… our parameters and foundations in the healthcare and supporting sectors were nowhere near desired levels… the fault-lines of the past decades had caught up with us,” he said.
“Nonetheless, we must now strengthen our institutions and build a pandemic-ready, a future-ready health care system because we now know that every generation could face a pandemic, and likewise our other infrastructures and institutions must be pandemic and crisis ready”, Metha said.
Saying that the pandemic has altered everything, he said the entire planet has already undergone a digital transformation. “Modes of communications have changed… through digital platforms we can reach infinite number of people across continents within seconds”, he said.
The lockdown brought with it massive restrictions with normal life coming to a grinding halt, he said, adding that this has resulted in the global economy spiraling down as jobs were lost, manufacturing stopped, food production got adversely impacted and linkages no longer existed, he said.
“For so many incomes and careers became non-existent,” Metha lamented.
However, he said with every challenge, every crisis and every restriction, the other side of the coin offers new opportunities and new vistas at every level.
“We just need to adapt to innovation, creativity and doing things differently as it is going to be the key for success stories,” said Metha, adding businesses are changing course as consumption will reduce significantly, work from home has already taken over. Retail has gone down while online purchases have skyrocketed, he said.
These few examples make us understand that with every season of gloom there is always a silver lining of new opportunities, Metha said.
Locally, Metha said Nagaland will have to change its tourism narrative by going virtual – designing customised holidays, focussing on experiential trips, and creating safe bubbles.
Maintaining that Nagaland also has huge opportunities in sports and the sports economy, he said this multibillion dollar industry is no longer looking at huge arenas but safe destinations as sports is being played without live audiences but still reaching millions of eyeballs.
“Our tourism, sports and entertainment industry must be synchronized to tap the new potentials,” Metha suggested.
He pointed that India has 40 million outbound tourists every year who will be spending approximately 45 billion dollars by 2022 in the tourism sector. In this, he said capturing even one percent of that market will have an economic impact of more than Rs 3,300 crores.
Timely policy making, planned policy implementation, and governance strategy are so important for the economy “of now” and the economy “of the future”, he maintained.
In this, Metha said the way forward is that “the system must retool rapidly and develop new skill sets”. “Those that don’t adapt or fail to keep up will be left behind. For Nagaland, we must not return to the normal because the normal we had was precisely the problem,” he said.
“This is an uncomfortable statement for many but we have to accept this fact only then can we move forward,” opined Metha.
AYO president Kekhrie Pfukha gave the introductory note while Pastor of City Church Kohima Rev Kedo Peseyie offered prayers. AYO vice president Neidilhoutuo Sechü chaired the programme while vice president Neisizo Kuotsu tendered the vote of thanks.
(Page News Service)