COVID-19: Alarming spike in coronavirus cases around the world
Coronavirus cases are on the rise across the world, and it will seemingly increase the mortality rate (“COVID-19: Global cases surpass 27 million”, Gulf News, September 07). However, death and critical cases in India, which is now placed second in the list of coronavirus infected cases in the world, are comparatively less. At the same time, it is everyone’s responsibility to strictly comply with safety norms while travelling through the airports, respect all precautionary measures implemented to ensure their safe reach at destinations, and follow the local quarantine guidelines.
When it comes to resuming commercial activities and lifting travel restrictions, indefinite closure of business activities is not viable any more for any country. Along with the economy, the survival of people would become difficult if the situation persists. Therefore, the opening of air travel, as well as commercial activities, will contribute to the daily lives of millions.
It is also learned from reports that basic COVID-19 protocols are largely overlooked by people. Social distancing and wearing facemasks are the primary control measures to stop the spread of the virus. Overlooking them will further jeopardise the situation. People are seen in public places like beaches, celebrating special occasions in groups without facemasks and sharing photos on social media, and that sends the wrong messages to the general public. Authorities have been urging the public to stop public gatherings and avoid any kind of parties and functions to minimise the exposure, yet the message has not been accepted in the desired manner. It is the time for everyone to adjust to life with COVID-19 slowly and respecting the basic control measures is the responsibility that rests on every single individual. ‘Stay home, stay safe’ should not be just a slogan, but should be followed for the safety of everyone around us.
From Mr Ramachandran Nair
Support parents to help their children with online schooling
When the coronavirus outbreak led schools to shut down, parents had to quickly rally, juggling their jobs with the added roles of teacher, tutor, and technician and more (“COVID-19: As the UAE reopens, parents struggle with a safety dilemma”, Gulf News, July 21). As schooling shifted online, mothers have to become teachers as well as online facilitators. Employers really need to empathise, be helpful and recognise the issue parents are facing, while they adjust to a new rhythm of school from home, especially first-time schoolers, who would need complete assistance from their parents till they get a grip on the learning process.
Remote learning is a brave new world— one we've entered with little preparation. And like me, parents everywhere are grappling with remote school while trying to balance their office duties. The surrounding environment can be a big distraction in the home, too. Having favourite toys around can make it harder for children to focus. Parents are re-considering how to set up a quiet, clutter-free workspace that is comfortable for the child. It may be hard for some kids to sit through an entire class. Some children might need more frequent breaks than others till they get into the rhythm and rigour of academics.
Now, with children getting into early use of devices, parents are left with a dual challenge: managing new ways of working, while not allowing them to get lured by video material not appropriate for their age, online video games or watching senseless shows. This will further require parents to curate relevant content, block certain sites inappropriate for their age.
Parents are plagued by worries about how their children will perform with online schooling. Managers can help by providing condensed work weeks and flexible working hours to support parents struggling to cope with the schooling from home scenario. An additional number of leaves should be given to attend school meetings, whenever required. Companies need to restructure their human resource policies to benefit childcare and work from home norm, so as to align with this new way of working.
From Ms Alvina Clara
India-China standoff in Ladakh
India could have averted this situation if they had acted on time with already available resources and technology (Experts warn China-India standoff risks unintentional war", Gulf News, September 07). India overlooked the behaviour of China’s border dispute with their other neighbours. India thought China would never resort to such adventurism with them, thereby, in fact, underestimated the power of China. Apart from that, India’s diplomatic relationship with Nepal underwent drastic changes soon after Narendra Modi’s incarnation as Prime Minister of India. That situation pushed China’s strategic interest in Nepal to new heights. China made good the relationships with neighbours of India with a purpose, whereas India tried to foster a relationship with faraway countries by ignoring immediate neighbours.
India has one of the youngest population in the world. The majority are unemployed, and many of them could have been inducted into the military and deployed on frontline areas with China, for guarding borders. The unnecessary expenses incurred for statues and advertisements could have been used for additional recruitment of military personnel. Modi’s assertion at an all-party meeting that ‘China did not enter our territory, no posts taken’ already proved to be a lie, which was actually said with an aim to satisfying the people of India. Modi failed miserably to explain to the nation about the loss of lives in Pulwama and Ladakh, together with redrawing of maps by China and Nepal, with the inclusion of Indian territories.
The world knows very well who intruded and what happened but finding a solution to it is not easy. Prevention was better than cure.
From Mr Girish R Edathitta