Covid 19 Pandemic – Rural and Urban India scenario

As the country is reeling under the rapidly growing figure of more than 11 L Covid positive cases in India with more than 3.4 lacs active cases, our Rural and Urban areas have been fighting their own battles of survival.

Rural scenario:

With almost 70 % of country’s population representing Rural India today, the effect of Covid 19 and reverse migration in rural areas is extremely significant. Also, as per the latest census more than 73 % of the nation’s work force being from the rural areas and small towns, the socio–economic impact of the Pandemic is an inevitable tragedy. Thanks to the large scale reverse migration that our country has unfortunately witnessed, there has been surge in the number of Covid-cases in those areas as well. Also, as the number of tests increased considerably by the state Governments even at the block and village levels, the growth of percentage increase of Covid-positive cases in these areas are turned out to be even more than urban areas. With thousands of semi-skilled and unskilled workers coming back to their native places the families have lost their single source of income in most cases. There is also a growing psychological impact among the rural citizens. Small village people with not enough scope of education and living in remote areas are also the victim of superstitions and misinformation related to the pandemic, resulting a further aloofness even at the cost of their own livelihood. Virus fear is harming village economy by confining active workforce. Declining in agricultural activities has its impact on other areas, small business, education and small savings.

Urban scenario:

Urban areas on the other hand, have been facing challenges of their own. Being the first ones to face the impact of covid 19 and subsequent lock downs, the urban India has been experiencing the double-whammy –the spread of the disease and the breakdown of the socio-economic balance. Job-loss, pay-cut among the service classes and business slow down in many industries has a huge impact in our urban society. The middle and upper socio-economic classes in India are forced to adjust with this ‘new normal’ lifestyle and struggling to cope up with the two decisive options of whether to hold back at confinement due to the rapid spread of the virus or to slowly start the normal life with new rules and precautions. The upper income group of the society, at the moment seemed contain to continue with the pause button on, in terms of spend, investment and venturing out.

Educational Paradigm Shift during Covid

The latest whatsapp joke has become very popular among school students these days – Earlier they used to say don’t use mobile and internet & now they say it’s all about mobile and video calls only.

During the time of Pandemic when perhaps every aspects of life, which we used to call ‘normal’ are no longer the same, but this is also true, life must find its way. One such critical area, where the need for change has become evident, is education.

With the focus of delivery and communication through internet and electronic media it’s not only the medium of instruction that has changed it has also brought about a considerable impact on the lifestyle of the students, parents, and teachers. The new Education process has also lead to enormous brain storming on the part of the Council of Education, decision makers, academicians in order to finding out an all new pattern and meaningful system in the Education.

Like most of the transitions in our life, this sudden and exclusive change in education system has not been smooth and flawless. The new system has been a subject of criticism and debates from various sections of the society that includes both academicians and parents. What about the economic imbalance and affordability of parents-as many of them might have taken extra miles to get their children admitted in reputed schools but cannot afford a smart-phone or a laptop immediately! What about the emotion of helplessness among those young minds finding it difficult to cope up with the technologies required, for apparently no fault of their own! There are many who have voiced the similar opinion in the preset day context. Late night online classes, weekend classes and irregular study habits are again some of the things the parents are finding difficult to deal with.

While many of us would like to embrace the challenge of Covid 19 and wish to convert it as a catalyst for a change that has been long pending, but perhaps, it is best to take a balanced and more realistic approach, especially when it comes to nurture the young brains for the future.

The world may or may never go back to what it was pre-pandemic. But we all can count on it to adapt to the future in the context of our society rather than simply following the West.

The New –Lifestyle during the age of Covid-19

One fine morning, as we turned up the new page of our desk calendar of March 2020, little did any of us knew how the world would change around us in the coming few days. No-one, in our wildest nightmare have thought of a Pandemic right from the script of Steven Soderbergh movie would turn the world upside down, perhaps, forever.

Whether you are a Corporate Executive, Businessman, Doctor, Government employee or housewife no matter what profession, status and background you belong to Covid-19 Pandemic have changed the lifestyle of every individual, both in practice and in mind.

As we are coping up with this new lifestyle, one may consider the following aspects worth to ponder about:

Me time: With this forced “pause” in life, many of us have found a rare opportunity to retrospect and evaluate the present lifestyle. This led us to think of starting something new – a new profession, a new passion, a new home etc.

Rediscovering connection: With more personal time to spend so many of us are actually ending up connecting with old and new friends, relatives and others.

Rediscovering the smaller aspects of life so far taken as granted: The simple pleasure of walking in the neighborhood, playing with your pet, talking to your neighbor, trying a new recipe etc can offer so much joy and happiness which we unknowingly ignored so far in our day to day busy run.

Maximize your outdoor allowance: With restricted time to be out-door, we learn to utilize the maximum inputs in limited time period.

Self discipline: The life during corona period teaches us when to switch off. With no external pressure to control our activities on how much time to spend on a particular project we tend to develop the habit of self discipline. Allocating separate space (as much as possible) for work, rest, exercise and leisure is an integral part of this self disciplined “new normal “.

The Eating habits: Staying at home all the time often ends up eating more frequently and quantity more than required. Thus, focus on adopting healthy eating habits is an important factor in the new lifestyle.

As we are all living through this unfortunate but unavoidable period of life, it is better to try to look at the brighter aspects , as it also shows us the futility of man made divisions and how we as human beings are alike in our sorrows and pleasure and how it is important to connect more and respect the nature.