Pandemic lessons and time for a political change

There is a need for well-meaning people to join forces and defeat selfish political parties of today

STEPHEN DIAS | AUGUST 30, 2020, 10:22 AM IST
Pandemic lessons and time for a political change

If the Goan people are feeling adversely impacted by the failure of the government of Goa from the fact that the state was a green zone not so long ago and now has transformed into a red zone with more than 15,000 Covid-19 cases and 175 fatalities,this dereliction of duty reflects on the government.At the point when zero infections were the norm in Goa, it was the duty of the government to seal the borders adequately and to stagger the implementation of the lockdown in such a manner that would have heavily curbed the spread of the coronavirus.

Even Mangor Hill could have been prevented with the judicious implementation of measures. Goa would have been in a better position now if the spread of Covid-19 was contained then.

Even the World Health Organisation had cautioned that infection and fatalities would have peaked in India and thus in Goa, but none took the early warnings seriously. So what this has to do with political consequences in Goa? The people in Goa at large began to stare at a bleak future. Even at this point, if a third front begins the implementation of measures that could deliver the people of Goa from the serious mistakes of the political dispensation, it would come as a solace.

It is time for people to look at self-reliance in these trying times and not to depend solely on government doles like Griha Aadhar scheme. It is possible that small families, especially in the villages, could become self-sustaining

by taking up agriculture and other traditional occupations that could give them their daily earnings for a living.

It is the will power of the  people and the leaders of a third front that will be the determining factor now. What need is a committed set of well-weaning missionaries and those aspiring to be politicians. They could take up the cause of the people, especially those who are less privileged. The well-meaning people will have to join forces and defeat political parties of today who rule by resorting to juggleries and do not give a dam to the necessities of the people.

There is time and a small beginning could be made in an organised manner that will in itself liberate those who seek freedom from the clutches of modern-day politicians who merely manipulate people in order to rule.The Bhoodan Movement by

Acharya Vinoba Bhave could be a good example of how the 19 epidemic in Goa could be converted into a mass movement that will be appealing to those who are most affected.The rise of a completely different political party with true allegiance to the people could emerge from the ravages of the Covid-19 pandemic that has cast deep lacerations on the psyche of the common man in Goa. However, this type of resolution can take root in Goa provided committed and sincere leaders are willing to look at the real needs of the people.

People’s aspirations and needs could form their plank for formation of a political entity that will always realise its promises and responsibilities in the future. If such right-thinking men do not exist, then Goa is doomed to be ruled by those that only satisfy their own political aggrandizement and throw out the interest of the people to the wind. This type of opportunity will not come back again soon.

These hard times are the determining factor if the iron will of the less fortunate will flourish in an atmosphere of political distrust. The common man is paying a heavy price for the mishandling of the Covid-19 pandemic. This is one rare opportunity not only to heal the pandemic wounds but to take steps to bring about a political change for the good of the less privileged. The politics of engineered defections by a few should not be able to hold sway over the aspirations of lakhs of Goans.(The writer is a social activist)

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