By D N Singh
A youth can walk faster but the elder knows the road. This logic applies to what the Congress party’s white paper on 22nd Junehas been all about.
The party which has ruled India for more than six decades should have exercised the discretion to rather volunteer something before being asked.
In any healthy democracy, the opposition has every right to point at the mistakes of the government in power but, it cannot be merely the luxury of conviction from the ring side and painting everything in one colour.
There is no problem in saying that the pandemic has caught India and the world unaware. And handling a situation in a country with one crore thirty five crore population is no mere task. Be it any party in power.
In its white paper the Congress has made the repeat mention of the word “disastrous”(referring to the handling of the pandemic waves, first and second) which sounds, at this juncture, a bit hurried and unduly panicky. That too coming from Rahul Gandhi who, by implication, is the harbinger of the Congress.
Lapses have been there and to an extent, lapses are little comprehensible in view of the enormity of the spread of the virus that too in a country as big as India with such a huge diversity.
Wisdom In HindSight
In a mention in the white paper the party has suggestions for the government to get ready for oxygen requirements and hospital beds and medicines with an aim to “point the central government in the right direction”.
Critics often say that, the scion of the Congress often ridicules his own position by using language in his remarks rather inappropriately just for the heck of playing the role of opposition.
Gold Filling In Mouth Of Decay
But almost 15 months after the outbreak of the pandemic, which has claimed lakhs of lives and has abandoned an atmosphere of panic, white paper with pep-talks is like an exercise such as filling gold in a mouth of decay.
The white paper in its substance is a pack of rhetoric and a whole load of ‘ifs and buts’ being played to the gallery.
The nation and its people know that there have been several slips in foreseeing the enormity of the spread.
But, at the same time, there has been no dearth of awareness building through all the available platforms by the government urging the masses that prevention is more important than cure.
But it was for all to see that, there have been many violations made by people helping the aggravations which no government can handle with sticks always. So the consequent lockdowns and shutdowns are in effect.
The white paper is made to appear intelligible through repeat underscoring of some ‘pillars’.
Gandhi said his first pillar is the ‘ understanding of what went wrong’ which not only sounds abstract but obvious at this time. But what went wrong medically, no one in the world is capable of saying. Second pillar is readiness for the third wave and for that the Congress tops must volunteer to say when the Prime Minister meets them on June 24 and not merely airing convictions from the ivory towers.
Of course the third and fourth pillars the Congress has in vision are economic ‘ persistence ‘ during the Covid which is even difficult on a similar format for area specific populations but raising resources for bad times to come during the pandemic is rational.
About the Author:
DN Singh is a Bhubaneswar-based senior journalist.
This is the personal opinion of the author. The views expressed in this write up have nothing to do with the www.prameyanews.com