LETTERS | SHILLONG | JULY 31, 2020:
K. Sujatha Rao, former Union Secretary of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in her book 'Do We Care? India's Health System' revealed the crippled system and the measures to bring justice to the people who need it.
It is a "must-read" book for every government leader and the public in general. What is the logic behind allotting Rs 75 crore to the Meghalaya's Health sector? Only 75 crore! The broken system has been revealed, successive governments and political heads have hidden the bitter truth and have not cared for the welfare of the state and its people; the skeletons are coming out of the cupboard.
Similarly, as citizens of Shillong city, we have all failed in our public duties. HOW? Because of our complacent attitude and irresponsible behaviours; not wearing masks, not maintaining social distancing require discipline, which we lack. So we should also blame ourselves for the rise in the number of COVID cases in the state.
From not revealing the names of the COVID patients to lack of testing kits, poor quality PPEs, zero physical distancing, stigma, masks, these are just some of a few loopholes and lapses that can be filled only if our willpower is strong.
Alongside these, our dependence, over the years, on Assam for essential items and critical healthcare facilities reflects poorly on our ability to sustain ourselves. We are mere sitting ducks!
Hence, we, as citizens, should act responsibly and the first step to do that is to be wise while voting for our candidate. When we cast our votes, knowing his or her weakness, is as important aspect since leadership matters during the test of steel.
The political and bureaucratic circles of our state should unlearn to learn. The focus thereby, should be laid on education. Education in the state should cater to topics which are relevant in the 21st-century such as pandemics, artificial intelligence, sea-level rise, the Internet of Everything.
The last decade has changed drastically because of the movement of people and things at lightning speed. We do have time at our side and it starts today; I hope that the leaders, who we have chosen, can show some spine and lead us to a solution or else hope for a miracle.
By Christopher Gatphoh
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