15th Sep 2020 12:09:AM Editorials
Eastern Sentinel Arunachal News

As days go by, Covid situation in the country is getting more and more perplexing. On one hand while there are a few rays of hope, dark clouds on the other hand seem to be a constant companion, making it a neck-and-neck duel between hope vs hopelessness. Coming to the ‘rays of hope’ which has been shared by the Union Health Minister on the first day of the monsoon session of Parliament on Monday is made up of the following components - Covid-19 positive cases per million population in the country have been restricted to 3,328; in case of deaths it is 55 per million population and current recovery rate 77.99%. Now how much darker the ‘dark clouds’ have become very recently will be reflected in the following figures- total tally of caseloads was nearing the 45.5 lakh mark on Monday morning with an addition of 92,071 cases during last 24 hours and with 1,136 more fatalities, the 80,000 mark is now a matter of hours. For a common man on the street, it’s obvious that despite the mollifying appeal of the per-million and recovery rate statistics, it’s the growing mountain of cases and deaths that will bring the sinking feeling, little respite from which thus far has been attained. And while the national media is busy analysing the states that have so far compositely contributed more than 60 % of national counts, the situation in Arunachal is worsening. Amid this cascading desperation when all SOPs are nothing but ephemeral in effect, the messiah can only be the vaccine.

In this context, Union HM’s hint on Sunday that the country is mulling an ‘emergency authorisation’ for the vaccine particularly for elderly and people in high-risk workplaces (implies frontline healthcare workers, security personnel and similar others) has come in the forefront of discussions and expectedly has created flutters. In simple words it means a ‘compression’ of the timeline of Phase III trials, an issue that has become contentious where the overwhelming view is that it’s a direct compromise of the vaccine’s safety norm. Although it’s only a hint and assurance has come that it will be pursued duly preceded by a broad consensus ensuring all safety and efficacy parameters, the proposition will no doubt trigger debate. Prima facie, the proposal will seem unusual, over-ambitious and risky too. But, it can’t be discarded so easily since the ground realities are getting unmanageable rapidly and limitations of the currently applied Covid combat tools are too prominent to ignore.

The nation desperately needs the vaccine and at the same time can’t afford to play down the safety aspect. To get out of the dilemma, a fine balancing act is necessary which can only come through application of high-level prudence.   


Kenter Joya Riba

(Managing Editor)
      She is a graduate in Science with post graduation in Sociology from University of Pune. She has been in the media industry for nearly a decade. Before turning to print business, she has been associated with radio and television.
Email: kenterjoyaz@easternsentinel.in / editoreasternsentinel@gmail.com
Phone: 0360-2212313

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