Aata majhi satakli…

I tell you! This week has been bloody awful! Mr Chief Minister — what the hell are you doing? Seriously! Let me take a guess — for the past three or four weeks you and your colleagues have been playing with our lives, while you figured out a way to hang on to your kursi. Do you really think we care a damn about Vaze/ Parambir Singh/ Anil Deshmukh and the scandal you have spent these critical days trying — and failing — to clean up? The people of Mumbai and the good people of Maharashtra are dying like flies without any of you caring or bothering. Worse — the numbers are being fudged, with a 40% under-reporting of deaths. What had started on a dynamic note, with efficient handling of the Covid crisis and the vaccination roll out in the state, soon disintegrated into a total mess, with nobody in charge! It’s a free for all right now…

We are back to square one! No — worse! We are sinking while all of you are still busy politicking. Covid saved you from losing your job earlier, and in all fairness, you stepped up and did what was needed at the time. Then along came the Vaze-Singh-Deshmukh tamasha — citizens were unceremoniously dumped and left to fend for themselves, while all of you were busy with cover-ups! At the moment, there is a sense of utter panic — no beds, no oxygen, not enough vaccines, exhausted doctors and nursing staff — the system has crashed! And despite the emergency-like situation — all we are told is to stay home and behave ourselves! You may call the lockdown by any other name — but it is still a lockdown. We are told this is for our own good — it will break the chain! What nonsense. It is only for your good — the government is merely buying time. And for what? To hang on a little longer to power — that’s it!

This time last year, citizens were terrified of an unknown monster. Nobody knew better — we did as we were told — and that included beating thaalis and lighting diyas. Twelve months later, the entire world has changed 360 degrees — there is more information and a better grasp of what to do. We knew a second wave would be upon us — but netas pretended to be taken off guard and behaved like nothing much would happen. By then enough money had been made by handpicked contractors — Covid centres came up at a huge cost — they got dismantled, also at a huge cost. Now they are being rebuilt — again at a huge cost. Who pays? We do! For three precious weeks after the second surge hit us, we were abandoned by our elected representatives. Our Prime Minister and Home Minister were barely around to tackle the growing numbers across India — they were busy in West Bengal fighting an ugly war to capture the state at any cost.

The Centre messed up big time — and how. The Prime Minister chose to magnanimously offer our vaccines to 80 countries — and become a global hero himself! Now we know how badly we screwed up! The early advantage of being ‘the pharmacy to the world’ was blown. Adar Poonawala (SII) asked a pertinent question, “Will the Centre have 80,000 crore to give each Indian a Covid-19 vaccine?”

The mismanagement across the board has cost us big time. And the situation is likely to worsen after the Kumbh Mela spectacle — with millions ignoring Covid protocols and endangering the lives of their countrymen and women.

It is one set of rules for citizens — and another for politicians. Look at the numbers at political rallies — they are exempt from adhering to any Covid rules. But the rest of us are caged again, hoping against hopes, to stay Covid-negative — though as we all know, anyone can buy Covid-negative certificates for three hundred bucks! If testing itself has been thoroughly infiltrated and corrupted by touts — what remains? Labs are merrily throwing away samples! God help anybody, who needs hospitalisation or even a decent funeral. The bodies are stacking up… ‘everything is shut, but nothing is closed,’ as the joke goes. The over smart bureaucrats sat on their hands for three weeks, waiting for orders from the top. It is they who let the ball drop, while the Maharashtra CM and his party members obsessed over a corrupt cop — like nothing else mattered, not even Covid! This is worse than Nero fiddling while Rome burned. Whether the CM stays or goes is of the least importance. The next one in may be even worse! Meanwhile, whether we maro or live is of zero importance, too. The shameful apathy and callousness of the netas has killed more people than the virus. But wait —there is breaking news about Vaze… Covid can wait.



Views expressed above are the author’s own.


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