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We Have to Fight Pandemic as One Nation, Says Sitaram Yechury

File photo of CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury.

File photograph of CPI(M) normal secretary Sitaram Yechury.

Yechury was additionally of the view that the monetary situation of a number of states isn’t good. In the continuing battle towards the pandemic, the states desperately want cash. They have already been disadvantaged of GST funds.

  • IANS New Delhi
  • Last Updated: April 11, 2020, 10:13 AM IST

Opening up on a complete lot of points associated to the unprecedented 21-day nationwide lockdown, Communist Party of India (Marxist) normal secretary, Sitaram Yechury mentioned India has to battle this coronavirus pandemic as one nation.

“This is India’s battle against the deadly virus… To be fought by all the Indians together. You cannot leave one section out, and think that you are safe, you are not,” Yechury mentioned.

Referring to the Tablighi Jamaat controversy, Yechury mentioned, “Who allowed these people to come from Malaysia and Indonesia into India? Were they tested (at the airport) or not? These are the issues for which they (government) have to be accountable. But let’s now focus on the pandemic.”

When requested in regards to the path of incidents whereby MLAs and MPs of the ruling celebration celebrated a birthday bash or roughed up authorities officers in the course of the persevering with countrywide lockdown, the CPM chief mentioned, “It’s a mockery of the lockdown, and strict action should be taken against these people. But nothing has been done so far. On the other hand, the Uttar Pradesh government has announced a reward of Rs 5,000 on giving information about Jamaatis (who are missing). But what about the public events held by the BJP? For example, the BJP organised a swearing in ceremony in Bhopal. Similarly, an event was organised in Ayodhya, where thousands of people gathered. The yardstick has to be the same, we cannot have different views on such events.”

The lengthy drawn lockdown which has left migrant and the every day waged staff in utter misery, additionally worries the Left wing opposition chief.

“We are in the midst of a very grim battle against the pandemic. There are serious issues of livelihood, shortage of food and hunger. These problems need to be solved on an urgent basis. The government has stock of 7.5 crore metric tonnes of food grain in the FCI godowns. This stock should be immediately despatched to the states to be distributed among the poor. Prime Minister had promised to transfer Rs 5,000 to each Jan Dhan account and all the BPL accounts, but that has not happened. That has to be done for the survival of the poor,” mentioned Yechury, an alumni of the Jawaharlal Nehru University identified for his deep understanding of India’s socio-economic points.

On the financial entrance, notably on the issues confronted by tens of millions of workers within the non-public sector, Yechury mentioned that retrenchments and wage cuts are occurring and making life tough within the city areas.

“The Prime Minister had assured that there will be no cut in the salaries for three months but that is not happening. The government has to protect the employers and assure them of a monetary compensation to make this happen. Similarly, in rural areas, harvesting is going on but several grain markets are closed. Farmers are clueless about who will buy their yield lying in the field? Who will pay for it? These questions need to be answered as early as possible,” he mentioned.

The ongoing testing for COVID-19 appears to be bothering the Opposition, notably the Left events. The methodology or protocol for testing isn’t a difficulty for them however the scale of testing is definitely a matter of concern.

“Why do countries go for a lockdown…what is the logic behind it? Actually when countries opt for a lockdown they utilise this crucial time in conducting widespread testing to gauge the scale and spread of the pandemic. They identify the clusters and isolate those clusters, and later they slowly withdraw the lockdown. This is what every country is doing. But in our country the scale of testing is abysmal. As of now, our rate of testing is 102 per million. It is lower than Pakistan – 191 per million. Hong Kong tests 14,000 per million, South Korea 13,000 per million and Singapore 11,000 per million). So we have to step up the testing drive. If we do not expand this exercise then we will not be able to identify clusters and isolate them. If we do not do it effectively then how we will contain this disease, which spreads at a very fast pace. So immediately we have to speed up testing at large scale. It is vital in containing this pandemic,” Yechury, identified for substance and reasoning in his extensively acclaimed speeches, mentioned.

The frontline warriors of this battle towards the virus, the lakhs of nurses and the help workers within the hospitals additionally caught Yechury’s consideration.

“Yes, I am concerned about them. Everyone one should be concerned for them… as they risk their health in fighting this battle. So, the question is are we protecting our health workers properly? To secure their health, we require five lakh Personal Protection Equipments (PPE) every day. As of now, we are producing 12,000 PPEs per day. The first COVID-19 case was reported in India on January 30. Till February 28, we were exporting PPEs. These lapses are grave and would be questioned later on. But right now we have to accelerate production of PPEs at a war footing,” he mentioned.

Yechury was of the view that the monetary situation of a number of states isn’t good. In the continuing battle towards the pandemic, the states desperately want cash. They have already been disadvantaged of GST funds.

“So the government should immediately transfer adequate funds to the state in this hour of crisis,” Yechury mentioned including: “Last but not least, the issue of Tablighis, though being very irresponsible on their part, should not be communalised. In a grim situation like this, targeting an entire community would be counter productive. This will weaken our united fight against the coronavirus, so this must be put to an end now. I will reiterate… let’s fight this war unitedly… Let’s be united and defeat the virus.”

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