India recorded an astronomical number of 26 million Covid-19 cases – falling second only to the US, thus becoming the new epicenter of this global pandemic. India is the third country in the world to record more than 300,000 deaths – behind the US and Brazil. The nation is struggling hard to cope up due to the shortage of resources like oxygen cylinders, hospital beds, vaccines, and about 90% of the poor in India have no health insurance, and most health expenditure is out of pocket. The elites and the middle class make no demand for improvement in health care, and Covid-19 has strained it to the breaking point and beyond, as health care is for the rich and the focus on getting a meal is the focus of the poor.
This is the time where the youth can do their bit. “Prevention is better than cure, and it starts at our homes, we need to follow all the guidelines when we are indoors”, is an unanimous opinion of all my cousins in India. They all wear masks, follow social distancing, sanitize, wash their hands, and they have made sure that their grand-parents / parents are vaccinated. They too will do the same when it is their turn. I am also happy to report that my young cousins are helping the elderly to shop for their groceries online, and donate food to orphanages when they can. Team Project Jatropha has sent masks, sanitizers, wipes, gloves to some of their friends and families where the local stores in some cities ran out of those essential supplies when the country went on lockdown. Let us hope that things start to get better and improve in India.