Five reasons why HE cannot be blamed for COVID disaster

What a mess this has been. So many souls one will never meet again. Almost everyone I know has lost someone in their first degree of contact. Can HE, the supreme leader, be solely blamed for this devastation? Five reasons why I do not think so!

Yes, numerous families are left devastated. Yes, people died on the streets. Yes, lives could have been saved. Yes, the trauma of loss could have been lessened. Yes, the pain and suffering was of unimaginable magnitude. Yes, time will fly. Yes, the world will move on.

But the scars will keep oozing blood for years to come. The trauma that people, as individuals, as families and as a society had to go through will not be so easy to heal. Sadly, this saga of pain and miseries is not yet over. There are waves that people await. Not knowing what future has in store for them.

While we all know that a tiny virus was the principal cause of this disease, it is hard to accept that it was the sole reason behind the scale of devastation and miseries. Every thinking person knows that with little foresight, some planning and an iota of compassion things could have been much easier. Though causalities would still have been unavoidable, the numbers could have been much less and the scars less deep. Obviously this devastation is, if not an act of commission, an act of omission for sure. And someone is responsible for all this. The question is – who?

Due to His past records, the world is ready to dump all the blame on the shoulders of the supreme leader. I think this is purely a political vendetta. Any one person, or let us say two, cannot bring upon us so much of pain and despair. Putting all the blame on their shoulders is akin to associating them with some sort of divinity. By blaming them solely we seem to be shrugging off our own complicity in unleashing this tsunami of suffering.

I have many reasons for nursing this belief. Illustrated below are top five reasons why the supreme leader cannot be solely blamed for the COVID disaster.

1. He merely ‘represents’ the people he represents.

We live in a democracy – the largest democracy of the world! And he is the leader of the party chosen by the people of this republic. Right or wrong, he is still the representation of the collective belief of the society. He is the reflection of a collective thought process and is there to manifest that thought process in whatever ways feasible. If he is doing something wrong and not feeling awkward about it, it clearly means that his supporters adore the way he exerts himself. Hence, if there is blame, it is not on him but on the people he represents. He is simply aligning his actions to the belief system he represents – serving those who placed him on the high seat of supremacy. It is not his actions but the justification of those actions which is primarily responsible for this state of utter apathy and chaos.

2. It is the minions who execute the dreams.

In the organisation called government, supreme leader is merely the boss. He may choose to think whatever he wants. But he is not the one who ‘legally’ exerts himself on the streets and in the corridors of power. It is his minions who do the needful.

It is not within the powers of an elected representative to singlehandedly twist the rules and turn the procedures to do the undoable. It is the minions who execute stuff on his behalf. Without the minions there is no ‘boss’. Technically, it is the minions who ‘power’ the boss. They are ones who plan and legitimise unreasonable actions. What we eventually see and feel are their acts of commissions and omissions.

Though the minions too are supposedly bound by their oath, they happily break it to serve their masters for petty, though very rewarding, gains. They break their oath also because they are minions – by design!

After retirement many of them claim to have witnessed the wrong but what good does that claim serve. What is done cannot be so easily undone. The minions are smart enough to cover all their tracks.

3. The remaining pillars failed to hold the roof.

The supreme leader is the masthead of one of the pillars on which democracy stands. Failure of the masthead does not mean failure of the pillar itself. But, for the time being, let us assume that the whole pillar collapsed. Ideally, the remaining three pillars should have held the roof. But from what it appears, there were no ‘other’ pillars. What seemed as pillars were merely the holographic reflection of the main pillar, adored by the supreme leader. Hence they danced in sync with that main pillar.

You may be wondering where the real pillars went. Well, one of them transformed into minions and the other became a pied piper in the hamlet of sycophancy. It is not yet known what happened to the fourth one. Some believe that it sold its soul and went on a petty pilgrimage, while others claim that it is breathing its last. I wonder if it is suffering from COVID and gasping for air. Hope it gets an Oxygen cylinder soon!

4. It is the society as a whole that failed.

The supreme leader may not have behaved in accordance with the COVID guidelines. It is OK for him to do so because he is the chosen one. He can risk it because he has access to literally every resource of the country.

It is actually the failure of the people to not realise that they are not the chosen one. It is their failure to not realise that a pandemic was about to make a landfall – a pandemic so huge that it will stretch every available resource to its breaking point. It was known that such a stress would be felt even if there was ample readiness. And it was also known that there was no readiness.

While many people did display scientific temperament, majority failed to stay in the realm of logic and reason. An unscientific attitude of society coupled with a fatalistic attitude ended up amplifying the onslaught. People pitched marriage tents in a hurricane, went on leisure trips, partied as if there was no tomorrow – putting self and everyone around at risk. Even at his best, the supreme leader could not have caused so much of havoc had the society nursed a scientific temperament and conducted itself responsibly.

5. The virus of self-esteem.

The supreme leader was propelled to power on a belief that historically we were a great civilisation – a great society of great people. We still are. It is just that the world, and our own people, fail to recognise this obvious fact. 

We thought that our shrill ‘vishwaguru’ war cry will scare away the virus. We started off by stating that we have better immunity. Then we thanked our genes. Then we claimed that our existing vaccines were divine. We even banged utensils and chanted hymns. In spite of all these, the first wave hit us. It impacted us bad but not bad enough to wake us up from our slumber. We claimed, via our supreme leader, that we have tamed the tsunami. We claimed growth and prosperity. We claimed glory. We claimed how we were better off than the better-offs.

While our self-esteem ballooned, we celebrated democracy in the form of elections and religion in the form of kumbh. The large gatherings justified the smaller gatherings and so on. We used every trick of the trade to pump up our self-esteem and claimed that we were physically, genetically, historically, spiritually and philosophically ‘better’ than the rest of the world. As we watched each other bask in the glory of yesteryears, we failed to realise that neither the world and nor the virus were listening to us. We, as a society, paid a heavy price for ignoring the present and focussing too much on a past which has long gone by – a past which, by its very nature, does not belong to us!

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