Awaiting for The Better Half !

Is it still believable that the world has spent six months of 2020 shadowed completely by the novel coronavirus? The planet has not been visibly shaken like this in the last 50 years and this invisible enemy has managed to do that.

If we take a look at the timeline of this virus’s breach into humanity’s normalcy, it would probably be December 31, 2019 it made its first massive surfacing in the news globally.

On that day, the Wuhan Municipal Health Commission in China reported a cluster of cases with pneumonia. No one knew that could trigger a global catastrophe, and none knew 2020 would dawn with a crisis.

Travelers and unknown contacts became innocent carriers of the virus and it spread around the world. During the middle of March, this infection was announced as a Pandemic by WHO. The seriousness of the virus was slow to mark its presence in Indians’ minds. On January 30th India identified its first Coronavirus positive case in Kerala. Subsequent cases arose but until the lockdown many countries too were in anti-gravity mode.

Since March, despite world Governments’, researchers’ and philanthropists’ sincerest efforts, we are yet to make a breakthrough. Amidst that there has been lots of heart-wrenching events across the world like the murder of George Floyd, Rayshard Brooks in the USA. It triggered one of the largest Civil Rights Protest in recent history – Black Lives Matter.

The India-China LAC tension was another global issue that was ticking like a time-bomb. Both nations were reported to build their defence in Ladakh and the disputed areas. It resulted in death of 30+ Indian soldiers and the loss of lives on China’s side too in the Galwan Valley incident.

The rise of locust threat in India, Pakistan and East Africa was another major fear that struck many hearts. Several hectares of crops were destroyed in seconds and many experts pointed that this locust invasion was due to climate change.

In India, the exodus of migrant labors in India has caused a setback to the industries and it must be mentioned about the mysterious death of two South Indians in Police Lock up. The first half of 2020 has been dark; the world is awaiting for a bright better half.

Signs of Hope?

The Imperial College London has made a revolutionary vaccine concept called saRNA – Self Amplifying RNA. It exhibited promising results to boost immunity on pre-clinical trials.

In the coming weeks, 300 people will be dosed with this vaccine. If test results give optimal results, larger trials will be done this year. The research team behind this is very optimistic with their vaccine.

University of Oxford which has partnered with Astra Zeneca PLC.’s experimental vaccine has become the first vaccine to enter final stages of clinical trials.

Hindusthan Times reported that vaccines from US-based Moderna Inc. and China’s Sinovac Biotech will enter final stages of the trials next month. It also mentioned that Delhi based Panacea Biotech has partnered with Refana Inc of USA to make a vaccine.

Hyderabad based Bharat Biotech is working on three vaccine candidates and recently Zydus Cadila, Ahmedabad and India Immunologicals in Hyderabad have partnered to develop a vaccine.

Dr.Anthony Fauci, Director, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, USA said on 27, May 2020 “We have a good chance—if all the things fall in the right place—that we might have a vaccine that would be deployable by the end of the year, by November-December”.

Meanwhile governments across the world have scaled up their corona preventive measures and the testing has been reported by the Government’s Machinery to be increased.

US President Donald Trump said on June 23 “Cases are going up in the U.S. because we are testing far more than any other country, and ever expanding. With smaller testing we would show fewer cases!”

New Zealand managed to become a COVID-19 free nation, the first in the planet (but on Thursday it was reported that it has 13 active cases. Despite this new cases this country’s progress gives us hope) New Zealand’s PM Jacinda Ardern’s leadership has kept the country’s defence strong against COVID-19.

India’s State of Kerala’s Health Minister K.K. Shailaja was honored by the UN on its Public Service Day for effectively containing the virus from spreading. Shailaja was the only person from India to speak with the UN leaders about the steps that were taken in the State to cut the virus’ impact.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi-controlled PM CARES Fund Trust has allocated Rs. 2000 crore for supply of 50000 ‘Made-in-India’ ventilators to government run COVID hospitals in all States/UTs. The border tension between India and China is seemingly reducing.

National Security is working around the clock to keep the nation safe. Terror threats and terrorists are being handled then and there. The attack of terrorists on a global level is almost very low everywhere when compared with previous years.

We have signs of hope, and we hope it is solidified by everyone’s united determination to make the next half of 2020 better.

Story by : S.David Karunakaran