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'Le Monde' editorial on Covid crisis: Modi's lack of prediction, arrogance and demagogy

Well-known human rights activist Shabnam Hashmi has forwarded a WhatsApp message, wondering, “they” can browbeat Twitter, Facebook, intimidate independent journalists, but can they really control the media world over? Reproducing the editorial of the French daily “Le Monde”, she says, “The Australian newspaper showed their thumb to the High Commission's “stupid” attempt at threatening them and asking for retraction and publication of rejoinder, which was turned down politely.”
This is what "Le Monde" editorial "Covid-19: Narendra Modi's India shaken" says:
***
Every day, 350,000 new infections and more than 2,000 deaths are recorded in the country. A situation due to the unpredictability of the virus but also to the lack of anticipation, arrogance and demagogy of the Indian Prime Minister.
Presented as the "pharmacy of the world", the country exported and offered millions of doses of vaccine, ensuring that it produced enough for its population to be protected. Three months later, the Indian "example" gave way to a nightmare.
Such a flashback cannot be explained solely by the unpredictability of a virus and its variants. Narendra Modi's lack of prediction, arrogance and demagogy are clearly among the causes of a situation that now seems out of control and requires international mobilization. The Prime Minister, after paralyzing and traumatizing his country in 2020 by decreeing brutal confinement, abandoning millions of migrant workers, completely lowered his guard at the beginning of 2021.

Collective immunity in 2023

Preferring nationalist harangues to health councils, more inclined to self-celebration than to protect populations, Mr. Modi only aggravated the situation. In an electoral campaign for the reconquest of the States that escape him, he multiplied meetings in front of gigantic crowds without masks. He allowed the Kumbh Mela pilgrimage to take place, during which millions of Hindus immersed themselves, each other, in the waters of the Ganges, transforming the place into a giant hotbed of contagion.
Mr. Modi is of the same imperative: prodigality of a vaccine diplomacy at the service of its ambitions, but unaware of the reality of the country's production capacities, priority given to politically favorable regions of India, rejection of its responsibility on the federated states. The result is that barely 10% of the Indian population has received a dose of vaccine and that, at the current rate, herd immunity will not be achieved until 2023.
In the face of this disaster, it is time for solidarity. Everything must be done to alleviate and shorten the suffering of the people of India, whom the pandemic has already brought back, by the millions, below the poverty line. The United States, the European Union, France, Germany and the United Kingdom have rightly announced the sending of aid in the form of respirators or components for the production of vaccines.
Never has the vanity of everyone-for-self been more blatant than in these times of Covid-19. Never has the dependence of every human being on all humanity been clearer. The Indian drama, like that experienced by Brazilians, also illustrates the ravages of populism, wherever *merchants of illusions prospering on inequalities manage to sell to voters their promises of salvation based in reality on nationalism and ignorance.

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