World leaders are facing a test like never before. Unlike World War 2, here is an enemy (Covid-19) which is moving around surreptitiously and taking one and all by surprise.
Till now, response has been –
1. Who is responsible (Chinese!)? President Trump initially called it a hoax and now is spending his precious time and energy blaming the Chinese! It doesn’t help, Mr President.
2. Greed driven industry leaders are clamouring about need for economic stimulus package and not health / death saving package. Unfortunately, finance and industries have been under grip of the same set of people. We are seeing that the wealthy nations are ill prepared to deal with the crisis of Covid-19. These nations discuss about cost of a test but have in other times moved hundreds of tonnes of armaments and thousands of soldiers to fight wars in distant lands! Is there no cost of a bullet / missile or of a soldier’s life? Same iron could go to make a bridge instead of a bullet.
3. Insensitivity- we have North Korea merrily conducting ballistic missile tests when the whole world is in danger. Are their leaders any better? Could not their resources be better utilised?
4. Religious leaders continue to take narrow view. The Pope was initially unhappy with the lockdown but had to relent. In India, a Dharmguru declared that the virus would not touch a Rambhakt! Similarly, some Moulvis are linking the catastrophe to Chinese government’s opposition to functioning of Mosques in Xinjiang.
We need –
1. If aliens from another planet invade earth, then all countries would need to join hands. Or would they betray each other to extend their physical boundaries by a few miles? Easier said than done! Yes, and that is the crying need of this hour. Join hands (not physically!) to pool resources.
2. Leaders need to listen. Again, easier said than done. Our leaders and decision makers have forgotten to listen. They think they are “Know all” people. We heard today Dr Emily Landon, Infectious Disease Expert of University of Medicine, Chicago disagreeing with President Trump’s idea of reusing masks. Leaders can put millions to risk by their utterances.
3. To worry less about Stock Exchange Indices and provide for the victims - irrespective of nationality or insurance status.
One hopes the leaders and decision makers make journey through this calamity as painless as possible.
4. Corona Tax- one just hopes politicians do not levy this to burden the common man!