What a crazy year two thousand twenty one was! One hand there was pain, chaos and desperation; on the other hand there was hope and faith. While humanity suffered. Humanity also came together to show that it cares for its fellow beings. The sheer power of collective effort was visible in the scale of operations that ordinary citizens launched to help and comfort fellow citizens, often risking their own wellness. Many people who succumbed to the virus were people who ignored their own symptoms to take care of their loved ones. And by the time their turn came, it was already too late.
2021 also proved that as a society we can never discount those who will chose to remain illogical even in the times of extreme crisis. It was also firmly established that stupidity is not a factor of caste, creed, class, gender, religion, nationality, ethnicity, etc. This time, sadly, everybody end up paying the price of stupidity of some.
The risk is not over yet. Another threat is looming large on the horizon though sometimes it feels as if this could be a welcome relief. Omicron may be a solution instead of a problem. It could be the endemic that we are waiting for. Hopefully normal times will return soon. But prior to that Omicron may display its fearful scale and magnitude. What will create havoc is not the virus but the lack of infrastructure, just as it happened in the case of delta variant. I hope that the society as well as policy makers realize that we are not fighting a virus but concurrence of a disease. And we need to do everything within our means to help truncate the concurrence.
Even though we stay in a rather remote location, the remote too was not left untouched. It was surprising to see that the virus managed to reach far off places, places that even the government officials chose to ignore. The daily news of people suffering from or succumbing to the virus was a bit too much to handle. The sheer magnitude of the devastation almost threw me into depression. Thankfully, I got a chance to remotely partner with like minded folks for conducting relief operations. While doing so, witnessed different shades of civil society organizations, government officials, business people, etc. Got to know some more about the remoteness and diversity of Uttarakhand.
During this phase of isolation and new realisations, I also changed gear to formally articulate and share my views online. Apart from growing www.pangti.com I also initiated www.pangti.in for sharing my poetry and prose in Hindi. www.gyanima.org saw its ups and down and Gyanima Foundation got formally registered as a trust.
Workwise there were many ups and downs. Some clients were badly affected by the virus. I worked towards realignment of my professional focus. I was almost on the verge of starting a design firm exclusively for social sector (including legal communication) when remote job opportunities came my way. That is one good outcome of Covid. Exploration led me towards joining eGov Foundation, a Bangalore based non-profit that offers open-source digital public goods but the sphere of work is not limited by that.
For me 2022 is the year of change. It ushers new ways of understanding and doing things. It is destined to create new normal. As we embark of this journey I wish that everyone gets what they seek. I wish all your dreams come true!
I end this note with a big thank you to all of you, who spend time to read these articles, discuss and share them and provide their valuable feedback. Listed below are the five most read articles of 2021.