The unprecedented second wave of COVID-19 caught India unawares as it wreaked death, destruction, and despair across the country. There has been an unending stream of reports and visuals depicting the scramble for medicines, vaccines, protective gears, beds, and oxygen that snuffed out thousands of lives, leading to heart-rending wails of relatives and lengthening chaotic queues at crematoriums for last rites. Further, the looming shadow of economic downturn due to continued disruption of business activities caused by lockdown has only accentuated the gloom.
The suffering from the century’s worst pandemic has been colossal and all-pervasive but, we a bunch of eternal optimists at Namaste Bharat magazine, believe in holding on to hope even while reporting the grim truth. Mankind has to emerge wiser rising like a Phoenix from the COVID-19 ashes. We need to learn our pandemic-lessons well to preserve the delicate ecological balance that is the key to the survival of human race.
It is in this spirit that we need to follow the message of the World Environment Day celebrated on every 5th June. The Day again brings to the fore the harsh truth that we human beings have acted recklessly and ended up committing excesses against environment, a major reason for the continuing outbreak of COVID-19 that the globe is reeling under since March 2020.
We need to emphasise that the country will ultimately withstand and sail through the whirlpool of doubt and despair unleashed by the pandemic’s calamitous resurgence.
Invoking the spirit of John Henry Newman’s famous hymn Lead, Kindly Light, Namaste Bharat promises to get our readers umpteen stories of optimism and inspiration to enable them to pick up the pieces instead of fuelling despair among the Indian diaspora spread across the globe, helplessly watching their kith and kin struggle for oxygen, beds, vaccines, etc in the country of their origin. Our magazine also attempts to capture and highlight the diaspora’s overwhelming spirit of giving back to the country of their origin as Corona resurgence has made it all the more relevant with Indians abroad deeply concerned with how things are unfolding in their motherland in the wake of the tightening clasp of the virus.
As stated earlier, COVID-19 is also the consequence of man’s limitless exploitation of Nature. But as Winston Churchill aptly puts it, “Never let a good crisis go to waste”, let us brave the onslaught of COVID-19, think afresh, emerge more disciplined and contented and change the way we have conducted ourselves so far even though life would no longer be the same for many many years to come.
Given that India’s health infrastructure was found to be grossly inadequate to cope with the fury of Corona 2.0, it forms the Cover Story of our June 2021 issue. Reinforcing the need for upgrading the healthcare system and equip it with the ability to withstand any unforeseen pandemic, we have roped in eminent medical practitioners and administrators who have penned down in-depth, comprehensive articles deliberating on various issues including the measures that need to be taken by the Government of India to build a robust healthcare edifice.
Namaste Bharat urges the Government of India to increase budgetary allocation on health which would not only ensure availability of adequate healthcare but also upgrade the critical care infrastructure to meet healthcare emergencies.
Happy reading Namaste Bharat!