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Saturday, December 3, 2022

Should Government continue with Lockdown? By Damodar Kochkar (President, Goa State Industries Association)

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When they ask me this question I really wonder if we humans are the most evolved species on this planet .


One thing that everyone is sure about this Covid 19 is that we humans are the carriers .


If we had acted responsibly by keeping safe distance from others, wearing mask properly & avoiding crowded places, we would not have been in the situation we are today.


But we thought that our family, friends , colleagues are exception to this , this Virus won’t harm us so we celebrated weddings , parties with them , exchange handshakes & hugs with them .


And when infections increase these very people shout out for lockdowns .


Now because of foolishness of few among ourselves entire nation has to suffer . So naturally we cannot exist here by ourselves we need cooperation from everyone.


Unfortunately, Some people realised this only after some of their dear ones lost their life .


I feel all of us need to take responsibility for what is happening around us .


Yes, Govt., is also responsible. It should have avoided unwarranted events . It should have visualised the coming of second wave of the virus and created adequate infrastructure like oxygen plants in hospitals etc. , We understand that this situation has come because the entire contract of oxygen supply of all Govt hospitals has been given to one person/agency, that too for 10 years . This has finished all others players in the market . And now they are reluctant to support. We ,in industries also never rely on one supplier ,always keep couple of suppliers”. But it is too late to blame. Now let us unite and fight the virus.


If everyone of us takes on themselves to pitch in wherever possible to improve this situation, those who have money can give money, those who can physically help the paramedics or police can do so . Those who have the capacity to help in creating facilities can do so . Not just blame and creep about the situation.


Now regarding lockdown, we must realise that our country is not rich and developed that we can sustain constant lockdowns .


Lots of our population still does not have guarantee that they will get next meal on their plate without working out for it .


In this condition talking about frequent lockdowns would be a cruel thing .


This is not only true for a daily wage worker  who has to fend for their meal . But also for Msme’s who just cannot pay there employees and other overheads without working out for it .


Now it’s time that we should learn to live with this Virus , not by stopping our necessary activities but overcoming it by working jointly with intelligence .


All citizens and government have to work in tandem not by politicising it , but jointly working towards single point agenda to overcome this minuscule Virus who is trying to get the whole humanity on their knees.


I would like to highlight here how in small way industries contributed to support government in fight against Covid 19 .


  1. When all migrant labourers were struggling to get their rations , we at Gsia started distributing rations in all industrial estates.
  2. When govt testing facilities got overwhelmed, we started our own swab collection centre , bought Rt PCR Machine  and hired microbiologist to do our tests .
  3. When COVID Centres where falling short , we started our own 140 bedded Covid Center.
  4. Provided water , biscuits to migrant labourers during there mass evacuation last time .
  5. Provided whatever shortfalls at govt hospitals from beds , masks , kettles , fans , testing kits , floor cleaning machines, sanitisers to oxygen concentrators which are on the way .
  6. Started vaccination centre inside industrial estates with the help of govt’s PHC ‘s .


Now that there is shortfall of hospitals , considering to start one with oxygen and ventilator facilities .


Considering the present  situation I feel, there can be a partial lockdown but definitely not a total lockdown. The manufacturing activity and some essential services/groceries should be kept open keeping in mind the poor workers and economy of the State.

Also top priority should be given for getting entire population vaccinated at the earliest. And we as industries are ready to support govt in achieving this .



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