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Is Indian media behaving like vultures; feeding on the dead in quake hit Nepal?

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SHIMLA – The Himachal Watcher community appreciates and indeed thankful to Indian military for their incredible job in quake hit Nepal. We also praise our PM for his immediate involvement in rescue and relief operations. We also respect people and NGOs from India present on the ground.

However, we feel that India media is feeding like vultures on the victims of the devastation and death in quake hit Nepal. The insensitive reporting by mainstream media is diluting all of it. Journalism is secondary; humanity is first .And it’s not human to put bleeding, injured, and traumatized victims on camera with mike asking them how he/she is feeling. It’s no way justified to push into cremation grounds and shoot your footage while people mourn over their dead. It’s the most absurd kind of journalism. We are quite aware that Nepal is very near, cheap, and nobody cares for visa or tough legal authentication, but do not make it an opportunity to exploit sentiments on the name of reporting.

See, what you did here. The Nepalese have started tweeting #GoHomeIndianMedia and #GoBacIndianMedia with an open letter to mainstream Indian meida. It’s a trending hastag on social media.

To Indian media,

I would like to thank from the bottom of my heart for the help your country has provided at this time of crisis in my country, Nepal. All the Nepalese in and outside of the country are thankful to your country.

However, me being a Nepali outside from my motherland, when saw your news and news reports, my heart cried and hurt more than those destruction caused by 7.9 Richter magnitude of earthquake. Like all the medical personnel are taught and trained for potential disasters in future, as a reporter, I hope there is some kind of training on how to report different events. Your media and media personnel are acting like they are shooting some kind of family serials. If your media person can reach to the places where the relief supplies have not reached, at this time of crisis can’t they take a first-aid kit or some food supplies with them as well?

There has been one viral news report going on where a reporter presented how people were fighting for food and one women got injured badly. Thanks to the reporter who had enough time to grab the victim and bring to the camera to show the victim hurt badly on her head. But how surprising, he did not have a minute to grab a piece of cloth to stop bleeding . That reporter did not have a minute to grab the wrist of that person who was beating others with helmet. There was of course a cameraman who does not want to miss a second so that a dramatic news could be presented. I think you are a human before you become a media person. As a responsible person, it was your duty to save someone.

Next, there was this one reporter who had so much time to disturb the rescue workers on asking about technology. If you cannot save one life on that spot, could you please stop bothering others? It looks like , the reporter is new to the world of technology. A show where these technology launching program happens would be better for him to host. Thanks to tons of reporters who came to Nepal from those rescue planes of India, you took a seat where a victim could be transported to hospitals/ health camps. Thanks to you all reporters, you took a seat where a bag of food and supplies could be placed to send to those hardly hit places.

As a human, show your humanity. There are enough programs in this world of television where people can see dramatic shows, family serials, horror shows and nonsense reality shows. You do not have to add more at least in this time of crisis.

MESSAGE TO ALL THE MEDIA PEOPLE WHO ARE ON GROUND NOW IN NEPAL:

Your duty as a reporter is not just to capture the scenario and interview people. If you have access to these critical areas hit hard by earthquake, please take some first-aid kit with you. Take some food supplies, tent and water with you. You don’t have to show how government is not able to send supply there. At least you could reach there, so why can’t you all team up. We Nepali people have already seen and experienced weakness and selfishness of our government all our years. At least this time, everyone show your duty as a human.

MEDIA IS A POWER, IF USED CAREFULLY. OTHERWISE IT COULD ACT LIKE A WEAPON KILLING THOUSANDS OF INNOCENT PEOPLE.

Madan has studied English Literature and Journalism from HP University and lives in Shimla. He is an amateur photographer and has been writing on topics ranging from environmental, socio-economic, development programs, education, eco-tourism, eco-friendly lifestyle and to green technologies for over 9 years now. He has an inclination for all things green, wonderful and loves to live in solitude. When not writing, he can be seen wandering, trying to capture the world around him in his DSLR lens.

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Shimla: Charitable Trust Providing Free Meals to Home Isolated Covid-19 Patients

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Upadhayaya Educational Trust

Shimla-Coronavirus pandemic has proved to be a major blow to the state’s governance. At a time when almost all three tiers of government failed to assess and prepare for the second wave in the country, many organisations have come forward to help the ordinary citizens in need. The Sunil Upadhayaya Educational Trust has been running an initiative to provide free food for those in home isolation in the state’s capital city.

The trust started the initiative from 28th April 2021, and is currently providing free meals to at least 83 Covid-19 positive families in Shimla, Trust Secretary Dr Surendra Sharma said.

Joint Secretary informed that the meal plan for Covid-19 patients have been prepared after taking into consideration all the dietary requirements of such patients . Suggestions for this diet plan were taken from doctors.

A well-planned protein diet consisting of fruits, salads, sprouts, vegetable, pulses, rice, Indian flatbread (roti), and a sweet dish is being provided to the home isolated patients, the trust added.
Social Service by The Sunil Upadhayaya Educational Trust

The trust informed that all the people involved in the initiative, including the cooks, have undergone the RT-PCR test.

Trust secretary, Dr. Sharma, claimed that the trust has managed to deliver 676 food packages till now. He also informed that the trust is running two helpline numbers for those in need of the food service. Needy people can reach the trust at the given numbers: 9418006194, 9805349124

The trust is also organising free online coaching classes for the students of class 10th and 12th for 35 days.

“All those students who are facing problems to manage their studies in the pandemic due to unavailability of required resources can contact the trust members and get themselves registered for the free classes,” Joint Secretary said.

In the past, Sunil Upadhayaya Educational Trust have organized various initiatives like cloth banks, and clothes distribution drives too, Dr Joint Secretary.

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Despite Inauguration of Oxygen Plant in Hamirpur, No Ventilator Support for Patients

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oxygen plant in hamirpur medical college

Shimla-Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur had inaugurated two Pressure Swing Absorption (PSA) Oxygen Plant at Dr. Radhakrishnan Government Medical College, Hamirpur, and Pt. Jawahar Lal Nehru Medical College, Chamba on Sunday. The government had ensured to provide uninterrupted oxygen supply to the patients admitted in both these medical colleges.

But now allegations are being labelled that he inaugurated the plant in Hamirpur in haste while the patients are still not receiving ventilator support.

According to a report published in a daily, the PSA plant in Dr. RKGMC established at the cost of Rs 1 crore couldn’t provide any relief to the patients. Despite the inauguration, the patients are being referred to Dr. Rajendra Prasad Government Medical College, Tanda and Shri Lal Bahadur Shastri Government Hospital, Ner Chowk

The report said that critically ill covid patients are being referred to nearby hospitals even after the inauguration of the plant and the timely availability of ambulances is also another inconvenience that the patients are facing. A covid positive police officer in critical condition was shifted to Ner Chowk on Tuesday. Last week a  BJP member in Hamirpur succumbed to corona due to the unavailability of a ventilator in the hospital, the report said.  

The PSA Oxygen plant at Hamirpur has a capacity of 300PLM. The plant was supposed to supply oxygen to a 30-bedded fully dedicated covid ward.

Senior officials from Dr. RKGMC, responding to the query, said that the oxygen plant is running, but the ward with ventilator facility is not ready yet. They said that covid patients can’t be shifted to the ward until the work concludes. The officials assured that the ward will be made functional soon.

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Govt and People Flaunting Interstate Travel SOPs Costing Himachal

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HP govt interstate travel sops

Shimla– Though the Himachal Pradesh Government has now announced imposition of strict curfew, similar to a lockdown, there is no doubt about it that both the government and the public underestimated the second wave of the pandemic armed with double mutant- more deadly than the first one. The government in the state was hardly able to take timely decisions at its own and those taken appeared to be ineffective and half-hearted. My own experience is a testimony to the carelessness shown by the government, as well as, the people during inter-state travel. 

HP Govt was one among the many states that made it mandatory for people entering the state to register with COVID e-pass and to carry a negative RT-PCR report. The measures taken by the government seemed commendable to me until I faced the ground reality.

A week after the official notification was issued, I travelled to the state capital city from New Delhi – one of the major hotspots. Rigorous checking and contact tracing is the need of the hour, but what’s happening at the border is far more different than what is expected of the officials.

It shouldn’t come to us as a surprise if fake e-passes in the names of Donald Trump and Amitabh Bachhan are being produced. This matter should put light on the negligent approach of state authorities. As much as we trust the government bodies to contain the virus, they are dangerously failing. In my own experience, I wasn’t asked to produce a negative RT-PCR report upon entering the state, nobody in the last 72hrs tried to contact trace me. I travelled to Shimla in a public transportation bus, on the eve of 4th May 2021. On entering the state border, the assigned official made no extraordinary attempt to check the passengers. Many were travelling without e-pass and RT-PCR test reports. I even asked the official to check my RT-PCR report, to which he showed no concern. It is due to careless mistakes like these that made India one of the most affected countries in the world.

I also noticed that many passengers were not carrying e-passes, either because they were not aware of the need to carry them, or because they didn’t take this mandatory condition seriously. The sheer ignorance of common people and those who are appointed to keep check of the situation is the reason why we are heading towards a catastrophe. The onus is on us, too. I made sure that I travelled with e-pass, so that the state government stays aware of my movement. I got my test done so that I don’t infect the virus to others unknowingly. I am also observing home isolation for a period of 14 days because there’s no harm in following the precautionary measures.

India is in the second wave of this deadly pandemic, and it is time we take responsibility for our actions. The primary reason for the rise of the second wave in India is the rampant violation of COVID protocols.

Now that the state government has decided to implement a curfew similar to a lockdown, I expect that the new Covid protocols will not have any loophole. This time people along with the administration will have to stay prepared to face the reality. The virus can be stopped, but only with our combined efforts.

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