The geniuses of India’s various opposition parties came together Wednesday and shot off a strongly worded letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, replete with mind-blowing suggestions which they now expect the government will accept and work on in order to control the Covid-19 pandemic in the country. Those who wrote the letter to PM Modi included: Sonia Gandhi (Congress), HD Deve Gowda (JD-S), Sharad Pawar (NCP), Uddhav Thackeray (Shiv Sena), Mamata Banerjee (TMC), MK Stalin (DMK), Hemant Soren (JMM), Farooq Abdullah (JKPA), Akhilesh Yadav (SP), Tejashwi Yadav (RJD), D Raja (CPI) and Sitaram Yechury (CPI-M).
Among the many profound suggestions which the coalition of opposition parties put forward before the Prime Minister were those which called for the immediate stalling of the Central Vista Project, repeal of the three revolutionary farm laws passed by parliament last year and a universal money transfer for all jobless people in the country. How these suggestions will in any way help India fight the Covid-19 pandemic gives a miss to any sane individual.
According to the opposition leaders, the repeal of the three farm laws was absolutely necessary to put up a spirited fight against the pandemic, as they said that the laws must be repealed to “protect lakhs of our annadatas becoming victims of the pandemic so that they can continue to produce food to feed the Indian people.”
The letter demanded that the budgetary allocation of Rs 35,000 crores set aside for the Central Vista project – construction for which has already begun, should be spent for buying vaccines from the central pool and procuring medical grade oxygen. The letter said that all money held in the PM Cares Fund should be used to buy more vaccines, Oxygen and medical equipment.
Furthermore, the letter said, “Give all jobless at least Rs 6000 per month. Free distribution of foodgrains to the needy (over one crore tonnes of foodgrains are currently rotting in central godowns)…Immediately begin a free, universal mass vaccination campaign across the country and invoke compulsory licensing to expand domestic vaccine production.” It must be remembered that the Modi government is already providing free foodgrains to the country’s needy, and has been doing so since last year. Also, the BJP/NDA-ruled states have all announced free vaccinations for their citizens. What stops opposition ruled states from doing the same is something which only the 12 leaders who wrote the letter can explain.
It is not as if the letter by leaders of the opposition only consisted of ‘pathbreaking’ suggestions which will result in an immediate nosedive in infections. As a matter of fact, the 12 opposition leaders made it a point to attack the Prime Minister and his government by saying, “Unfortunately, your government has either ignored or refused all (previous) suggestions. This only compounded the situation to reach such an apocalyptic human tragedy…Though it has not been the practice of your office or government, we would appreciate a response to our suggestions in the interests of India and our people.”
With every passing day, India’s opposition leaders make a grand clown of themselves and get ignored by the government for their evidently bizarre suggestion to tackle the pandemic.