Before establishing anything else, let us first consider the media portrayal of india’s treatment of the COVID-19 pandemic. Grievous, serious, and news-grabbing. Who wouldn’t want to have eye catching news about “the country that is dying without oxygen?”
An important point of notice, however, is that India is not one homogenized bloc comprised solely of individuals from north India. The other regions of India, though often shied away from the media spotlight, appear to be managing this crisis much better to a degree. They appear to be able to tackle the pandemic successfully, or perhaps just comparatively successfully, given that individuals who do not enjoy a large depository of wealth still find a different take from that north Indians are facing.
There has been a massive outpouring of help from the rest of the world, with news abounding that countries like the UK has donated 200 oxygen concentrators, and although this is comforting, on the same vein, another discomforting piece of news is that the help they have might not necessarily translate to an improvement on the ground. There is no guarantee that a $1000 dollar donation from anybody on the other side of the earth would ensure 10 lives being saved, heck, it might not even translate to 1 life being saved. Among a key consequence highlighted in this opinion is that of accessibility. Money can buy these equipment’s, but would this really yield any positive correlation on the ground? This should be the key question that the global community should consider.
We cant breathe
This is a rallying cry, a call to battle. This was the motive used during the BLM movement as a figurative “choking” of the racist system America has, and once more is used similarly in a literal and physical sense for the COVID pandemic in India.
Without concentrators to breathe, these patients cannot attempt to fight as they cannot survive the choking sensations through the lungs, the gasping of the alveoli as they try to keep afloat in a sea of carbon dioxide. This instrument is key to preserving the life of many an individual as they fight the propagation of the sickness that causes the literal choking of the body.
Everybody is blaming each other, but it appears that the main culprit that is pinpointed is the government, or at least that view is presented by mainstream media outlets that are not local. However, in the perspective of this individual, the government appears to have accepted blame for this, but are each pushing the blame to each other, and therefore furthering the blurring of lines as to who actually is to blame for this crisis.
Although this tactic appears effective in trying to remove the blame associated with them, it appears to be superficial an apology, and instead of directing any help to the people who truly needs help, the government appears to be trying to, on a very large medium, spread messages of distrust in the highest chambers of politics, enraging and leading up to the furor of the Indian populace.
However, in analysis of the quote, what these individuals have failed to do is namely to distribute these donated items properly and fairly to the general populace, who are in dire need of these equipment. This has also led to the massive spreading of COVID as seen by how there is no official decree by the government to settle, rather playing a game of realpolitik in their manner of addressing this issue, which further causes the virus to spread without this official settlement by authorial figures.
The elections are also seen as the main criticism behind this event, and therefore the consequential lead-up to a crisis as terrible as this, and a showcase of the virus’ virulent prowess.
In closer reflection, the media portrayal of these events might be frightening as a whole, but one should take caution to not fall prey to the intense media bait it holds to attract views.
This is not to belittle the effects of the virus, or the devastating effect of the virus in India, but is a rallying call to take care before thrusting fully into the rabbit hole that is the media game of clickbait’s. The situation in India is truly bad, but let us remember that this is concentrated in one area specifically, and not widespread to the entirety of India, at least, not yet.
How can we help?
Though it was previously mentioned that donations may not have any credible impact or translate to any help on the ground, it is still a point of notice that donations to volunteer groups on the ground, who can properly distribute to public hospitals and distribute the equipment properly, perhaps just not through state ones due to the government’s mishandling (as of this time).
Please consider donating to the gofundme page attached, which we will use to donate to the Hemkut Foundation, an NGO which has of yet been able to help only 30-40 % of the 12,000 calls they receive begging for aid to come. They are attempting to distribute these oxygen concentrators for free, however they desperately need help to allow them to buy these oxygen concentrators from foreign countries. Please help them through your donations to the page, which we will pass on to them!