Tuesday 18 June 2024

News Analysed, Opinions Expressed


Stop Survey, Disband 'one-man' Band, Mute quasi-quack medicine (By Prabhakar Timble)


The Chief Minister continues to prefer acting solo instead of creating symphony by leading a choir of all who matter.

Survey training with social distancing, watch behind the trainer!

There is a saying in Hindi ''Krishna Kare toh Leela Aur Hum Kare toh Paap”. (If Lord Krishna does it, it is naughtiness to be admired; if we do it, it is sin). Even their stupidity is for people’s welfare and our dissent is attacked as playing dirty politics. This could be the best description of the adamant attitude of the Goa’s Chief Minister to go ahead with the project of “Community Survey” to identify those who have Coronoavirus symptoms. The one-man think tank is putting at risk 8000 government employees including teachers, booth level electoral personnel and anganwadi workers and along with them the people at large.

The visits will be to every household, industrial estate colonies, shacks and migrant locations. These COVID warriors could end up in being carriers of the virus. With no medical personnel on board, not even a para-medic, this survey is an exercise without a nexus with the objective sought to be achieved. It is evident that the Health Ministry is kept aloof in the dark for whatever reasons the Chief Minister along with the inner party leaders think fit.  With so much of verbosity about a united fight, the Chief Minister continues to prefer acting solo instead of creating symphony by leading a choir of all who matter.

Again, borrowing another Hindi saying “Tum kare to Chamatkaar, Hum kare to Balaatkaar”. The Chief Minister is vehemently exhorting the people to stop roaming out, stop going for walks, avoid unessential purchases, stay contented with whatever available and even has advised not to sit out and chat. In the same breadth, the Chief Minister lines up groups to conduct a survey  involving 1560 polling booths and nearly 4 lakh households through personal visits and interactions.

This logic is beyond the comprehension of any sensible person. This is a purposeless data collection in context of Coronavirus but who knows the hidden purpose, if any of such an exercise.  Although sold as the emulation of the Bhilwada model, it is not even a bad copy of the principles and channels that the administration of this district in Rajasthan adopted to battle the spread of virus in the community. The primary focus in Bhilwada was on testing, nothing to do with cold data collection. The human resources locked were health professionals and not electoral-type manpower. The Bhilwada administration knit up synergy of all political leaders, social activists and NGOs and refrained from making it an exclusive political party affair. The administration took ownership of home delivery of essentials and the minimum needs of migrants and homeless.

In such a health emergency due to a pandemic situation, where the entire State is under lockdown, there cannot be attempts to use this as an opportunity of self-boasting.  A few weeks back, the Health Minister considered it as a matter of pride for Goa to become the first state in India to adopt technology to tackle Corona through a partnership with ‘Innovaccer’, a US-based health care data analytics company. The Chief Minister boasts of Goa being the first state to give Ayurvedic treatment to Covid-19 suspects and positive patients.

The Indian Medical Association has condemned this fashion of creating confusion by providing irresponsible patronage to untested forms of medicine. Yet, the Chief Minister of Goa, the Union Minister for AYUSH and the Prime Minister would never miss to capitalize on any opportunity to rake up what according to their interest-groups is the golden medicine with a rich history. People are known to make use of home medicines to deal with common ailments but the tall claims of politicians are an insult to the medical and health professionals. These are dangerous attempts to reinforce that ayurvedic medicine starts where allopathy stops. All forms of medicine have their strengths and limitations but finally we need to stand with what is scientifically tested and verified.

To use Covid-19 for winning the race of superiority between forms of medicine is knave and suicidal. It looks like the Chief Minister wants to take complete reins bypassing all ministries and most significantly the Health Ministry with such careless statements. In these pandemic times, unmindful of the risks, when the entire army of trained and qualified doctors are battling Covid-19, such reactions coming from the Chief Minister of a state baffles and the resolve to move on the road to Hell with the Community Survey shows scant respect for health professionals and the lives of people.

The lockdown is necessitated to break the chain. If the same needs to be continued with the same parameters or with selective relaxation, the top most priorities before the government should be to deal with the problems of unorganized labour, migrants and homeless population. Along with this, we need to maintain supplies of essential medicines and medical care for regular patients. This needs coordinated thinking and action plan from all the ministries.

The pandemic is more than a health issue and our efforts have to go beyond social distancing, quarantine and testing.  It has opened the economic virus of losses in production, shortages, unemployment, dwindling public revenue and poverty. If at all a survey, it should be a rough estimate or guesstimate in these spheres and coordinated action from all departments, corporate sector and NGOs. This can happen if the Chief Minister decides to disband the one-man band singing the same song of social distancing everyday and brings all interest-groups for joint action.

Disclaimer: Views expressed above are the author's own.

I would like to condemn the sheer mud slinging against the science of Ayurveda that is indulged into by people of stature. Without verification of facts. I wonder why there is so much of hatred towards a fraternity of hard working professionals.

The sheer generalisation and going as far as calling it quasi quacks is very unfair and malicious.

We as Ayurveda professionals have never considered ourselves to be in competition with any one. The only objective we have when practicing is the well being of our patient. And for this we use the well documented and scientific principles of Ayurveda.

And about covid 19, all branches of medicine are still studying it and the situation is dynamic. And don't see anything wrong in Ayurveda professionals making a contribution as long as it is within the ambit of medical ethics and the law of the land. Even the WHO is of the similar opinion.

Dr Gaurav Desai |

Prabhakarji must understand that all the government servant are educated and United. If they are not facing problem with this then why he should. Practical and theoretical knowledge are two different things.

Let's survey go ahead.

Rajesh Gaonkar |

Wonederful remedy note to Govt. Govt has to accept d action plan in d public interest.

RSNayak |

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Prabhakar Timble

Mr Prabhakar Timble is an educationist and a legal expert. He has served several educational institutions, especially as the Principal of Government College at Quepem, Kare College of Law in Madgao as well as couple of Management Institutes. He was also the State Election Commissioner of Goa.


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