Life under Lockdown (COVID-19)
I recently read a newspaper Editorial that made a case against Lockdown because, in that writer’s viewpoint, Lockdown skews the curve of COVID-19 cases towards the poor. In this article, I will build further on that argument and will discuss the state of affairs these days.
Due to the extent of this virus’s spread, I assume that you (the reader) already have a basic knowledge about it. But still, you can check this link for more information.
Moving forward, right now, COVID-19 has infected around 2.83 million people worldwide. Almost 200,000 have died since December of 2019. In a time period of just 3-4 months, this virus has completely disrupted the life system of humans.
Due to close connectivity around the globe, the virus has quickly spread to every corner of the world from its home country (China).
Up to March 15, the Government hadn’t taken many steps. It was in kind-of ‘chill’ mode. But then, closure of schools and colleges was quickly followed by every other institution. By March 25, a national lockdown was announced.
A Different Prospective
Today, its April 25, It seems like a long time since I had last gone out of my Housing Colony. Casper (my dog) has been keeping me calm and refreshed. To my good luck, I have access to facilities (clean food, clothes, water, shelter) that a lot of people sadly don’t have.
I spend a good amount of my day’s time doing productive stuff even in this lockdown. I don’t need to care about my meals or the thunderstorm because I live in a fine-enough apartment and have enough raw material to cook food.
But, what about the people who stay alongside the road or those who live in slums? They share washrooms and water outlets with the whole colony. Their whole family lives in a house close to the size of my bedroom.
To be honest, I can’t count myself in the rich guys but still, the gap b/w my living standard and those living in a slum is too wide.
This is the reason that there is a need to make a case against the lockdown. As the writer of that Editorial puts forward, financially poor can’t maintain social distancing or follow other guidelines like washing hands frequently because their living conditions don’t allow them to.
So, when a government announces something like a complete lockdown, it doesn’t help the poor in the sense that they can’t follow the required guidelines. Instead, lockdown conditions make their financial situation even worse because their household incomes dip to zero.
Unlike a middle/upper-class household, the family income of a low-class household comes from makeshift businesses (like tea stalls or vegetable hawking). They earn just enough to keep their daily cashflow functioning. So, when everything else is locked down, the inflow of cash to households is also locked down.
I am happy that the Government is helping them in this tough situation with various welfare schemes. But still, the dip in their life will be very deep. It will be more than hard for them to recover after the lockdown ends.
I am not blaming anyone for this situation. I am here to just share this alternate perspective of lockdown which ‘financially’ better-off people don’t even think about.
A lot of us are tensed about petty losses in their businesses. But we have no idea about the suffering of people who surviving just on a single meal due to this lockdown.
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