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Rise above politics to fight the pandemic: NPCC to PDA Govt.

K Therie
NPCC President, K Therie
  • Smugness of Govt. spokespersons cannot cure: Therie
  • Pushes for qualified experts to guide Govt

DIMAPUR, MAY 26: The Nagaland Pradesh Congress Committee (NPCC) has literally told the PDA Government in Nagaland to rise above politics to fight the raging COVID-19 pandemic in the State that has so far claimed many precious lives.
“In our consideration, the pandemic is not politics. Expression of self satisfaction by Ministers and Spokespersons of the ruling Government cannot cure in this pandemic. Subject matter scientists, experts, researchers and certified opinions are required as it deals with life and death,” said NPCC president K Therie in a letter to Nagaland Chief Minister today.

Stating that in the pandemic many precious lives have been lost, the NPCC insisted that the situation needs more serious attention of the State Government. But it rued that the performance of the State Government has been monotonous.
“The pandemic is not politics. These issues do not need politicians whom the people do not trust on the subject. Rather, experts and scientists with authentic evidences are the need of the hour to clear suspicion”, Therie reiterated, while stating that if the State Government is guided by qualified experts, we have chances of improving.
Recalling the April 21 meeting called by Nagaland Governor on ways to tackle the second wave of COVID-19 in the State, the NPCC lamented that there is no significant evidence of any implementation of the views and concerns shared in the meeting.
Therie said in the meeting, the Congress Party had not advised lockdown as it would adversely impact all walks of life and their future. “We continue to stand on our valued advice in view of the importance of economy for those people living hand to mouth and to sustain the common man’s economy”, he said.
He recalled that the Government had assured to quickly look into the SARFAESI Act to boost all-round public development activities but lamented that instead of facilitating the growth of economy, all development activities have been brought to a halt indirectly by closing all hardware shops.
“We also shared our view that online education for rural areas is not applicable on the same scale as urban areas and therefore advised that in rural areas, classes may continue with strict SOPs if found free from the pandemic. The Government has simply declared summer holidays”, he said.
Calling for more calibrated containment strategy, the NPCC suggested increasing mass testing especially in vulnerable areas and potential hotspots, which should be done after proper oral investigation and should be voluntarily. “No force should be applied for testing. Experts may advise those having positive results to home quarantine and first aid medicines may be provided. Declaring someone positive has led to heart failure and mental disturbance”, he said.
The Party also urged the Government to expedite vaccine procurement and increase vaccination centres, saying the current vaccination drive for 18-44 age group through a few hundred slots in two days a week is totally inadequate. It also exposes the digital divide where the marginalized people are left out, it said.
Therie also wanted reactivation of Government quarantine facilities to house visitors from outside, returnees and for those who cannot afford home isolation or paid quarantine facility. Strictly regulate entry of all visitors from outside the State and ensure they undergo COVID-19 test upon arrival and further undergo a stipulated duration of quarantine either in a Government facility or in a paid quarantine centre, he suggested.
The NPCC also called for provision of free rations to all non-ration card holders, especially daily wage earners in the State who are unable to get free rations under PMGKAY as this benefit was only extended to those holding PHH or AAY cards.
“Announce financial incentives for children who have lost their parents or earning member due to COVID-19,” it appealed.
The Congress also wanted designation of non-COVID Hospitals or healthcare facilities to take care of patients suffering from other ailments, saying the current trend of converting almost all hospitals to increase bed facilities for COVID patients has become a deterrent factor for patients suffering from other serious ailments from seeking medical care.
Ensure fair deployment/posting of healthcare workers and resources in all Districts in accordance to size and population with sufficient equipment and medicine supplies, it suggested.

Stating that Nagaland has the largest number of Government employees in terms of population ratio, the PCC said this can be put to good use by utilizing the services of Government employees in their respective places of posting, thereby relieving healthcare workers who have been multitasked in their job so far.
He also appealed to Naga Ex-servicemen (ESM) community to come forward and lend a helping hand, saying almost all villages in Nagaland have an ESM who can be a force multiplier for various COVID Task Forces if given an opportunity.
“There is huge suspicion in social media that not all COVID-19 deaths are true. Also, COVID-19 testing equipment cannot be fully trusted. These are two of many factors contributing to vaccine hesitancy”, he said while stating that experts and scientists with authentic evidences are the need of the hour to clear suspicion.
The NPCC further suggested that MP and MLA LADP funds may be used for procurement of equipment, oxygen, medicines, etc, for respective constituencies or Districts. (Page News Service)