If biases, discrimination and duality had a face, it would be the Communist government of Kerala. After easing the lockdown norms to celebrate Bakrid, in the middle of a swelling second wave to appease the Minority community which led to a deadly spurt in cases across the state, the Pinarayi Vijayan government is now asking its citizens to not celebrate the Hindu festival of Onam. Even the pretence is off now.
Kerala Health Minister Veena George on Saturday asked people to avoid crowds and if possible, even events, celebrations during the Onam festival. She also urged people not to visit relatives to reduce the risk of Covid infection.
However, the diktat is strange given the fact that a different yardstick was used to frame rules for Muslims and the celebration of Bakrid. Despite raging infections in Kerala and the state government’s inability to manage the pandemic, the Vijayan government gave in to the pressure and had lifted lockdown restrictions for three days to celebrate Bakrid or Eid-ul-Adha from July 18 to July 21.
As reported by TFI, Kerala had reported 22,129 Covid-19 cases after the Eid-ul-Adha celebrations in the state. It was the first time since May that the southern state had reported more than twenty thousand cases in a single day which resulted in the highest single-day spike in Covid-19 in two months. As a result, the Supreme Court had slammed the Kerala government for allowing a three-day relaxation in Covid-19 restrictions on the occasion of the Bakrid.
Kerala on Sunday (August 1) posted 20,728 cases, the sixth straight day that the daily count had stayed over 20,000. Its test positivity rate (TPR) also remained high at 12.14 per cent while the national average is 2.34%. Active cases also rose to 1,67,379, more than one-third of the active cases of the country.
According to a TOI report, worryingly, there were signs that Kerala’s Covid surge was spilling out to its neighbouring states. Neighbouring Tamil Nadu and Karnataka have put restrictions on people travelling from the state with the former making RT-PCR test mandatory for people coming from the state from August 5 and Karnataka only allowing vaccinated people to enter the state.
Ever since the Seroprevalence data was released by the government, the sepoys of the Kerala government in the Lutyens media, as well as the high-ranking officials of the Pinarayi cabinet, have been twisting the numbers to suit their narrative. If the low seroprevalence of 44.4 per cent means that the spread hasn’t been as sporadic, according to former finance minister Thomas Isaac, it also means that fewer people have the natural antibodies to fight the virus. With a positivity rate touching 13 per cent, the state and its people would rather have high sero numbers than high infection numbers.
If we do believe that lesser people are infected in Kerala because people are conscientious on SoPs: masks, distances, hygiene. Then how does the state government explain its latest report that Kerala has more districts of concern, with over 10 per cent rate than any other state? If Pinarayi Vijayan’s government is good with testing, and people are SoP friendly, why are the cases rising?
The liberals often use the excuse of Kerala testing more and thus the cases are being reported on a large scale. However, the argument falls flat when one does a comparative study. Uttar Pradesh is the state that has set new records in Testing on almost a daily basis throughout the last 6-7 months. The state government under Yogi has been conducting more than 4 lakh tests per day and yet, the state has recorded less than 10 per cent of what Kerala has reported despite having a population of 24 crores.
However, the upshot of the article is clear discrimination meted the Hindus way. Forming a different set of rules for a community and later tearing it to pieces to rule the Hindus, which most certainly would quietly sit back and adhere to it just speaks volumes about how secularism works in a country like India.