Historically, all the pandemics have had multiple waves. For COVID-19 too, at least a second wave was predicted by the experts and the sundry, if not more. Some nations are into their third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. Surprise, surprise. India got a single wave of COVID-19. In other words, India has achieved herd immunity.
As of date, the majority of the countries are grappling with their second/third peaks. However, India has got COVID-19 covered, in total control, done and dusted with. India got a huge peak in mid-September 2020 and after that, it has been all downhill for the pandemic. This singular peak too, though huge in absolute number, was relatively insignificant compared to the mammoth population of India.
So, why would this be? What could be the reasons behind India’s single wave of COVID-19? Why has India been so successful when the bulk of the countries have not been able to tackle it? How did India manage the incredible feat of a single wave of COVID-19 which is beyond the realm of scientific logic and rationale?
The novel coronavirus cannot be partial towards India and the Indians. Nobody would suppose that the virus differentiates basis the nationality. This means that there is only one answer for the single wave of COVID-19 in India – Herd Immunity.
Ever since the pandemic started, scientists and researchers have been burning mid-night oil to arrive at the % of herd immunity. The estimates have varied from the lows of 30% to the highs of 70%. Whatever that could be, it is evident that India has already crossed the threshold of herd immunity.
Of course, there will be a lot many questions raised on this hypothesis. How is it possible to achieve herd immunity so fast? Why the extremely high number of cases required to reach the herd immunity never got captured/recorded in official data? Irrespective of the reported cases, why would even the mortality % remain so low? Finally, why is the Government not celebrating its success?
India did have some resemblance of lockdown when announced in last week of March and in April. But, since May onwards, there has been a charade in the name of lockdown. Except for the schools and the colleges which inexplicably remain closed even now, everything else opened up almost immediately.
Would anybody call vast numbers of disowned migrant workers walking on the highways – a lockdown? Even at the heights of the so-called stringent lockdown, the exceptions ruled the roost. Yes, the organized sector suffered for a couple of months, but it forms a minority in this chaotic, messy and disorderly nation. Anyways, end-May 2020 onwards, there was only a pretence in the name of lockdown.
The humbug of Atmanirbhar Bharat, the rations for the poor, and all such vain Government schemes do not feed empty stomachs. Indians have to fend for their selves. They know this basic tenet. Meaning, all the Indians were out of their homes searching for a livelihood and a life for their families irrespective of COVID-19 and the lockdown farce.
What would be the result when the nation is out on the roads in the middle of a pandemic? Nothing but the herd immunity.
Ok, India got a herd immunity worth of cases, but then why were they not reported? How can such a large number of cases go undetected?
By any chance, do you remember how it was to get a diagnostic COVID-19 test till just about 3-4 months back? A person needed to be symptomatic or primary contact of a patient or have a travel history. A person needed a medical prescription. Tests were rationed. In short, a person had to have a reason to prove that he/she is worthy of a diagnostic test.
If a person did test positive, the patient was either at the mercy of dreadful Government hospitals or fleecing private hospitals. Either way, the very being of the patient and his/her family was under a siege – physical and/or economical, emotional and/or social. The obvious and hidden costs for a detected COVID-19 patient in India were ruinous.
A rational choice under the circumstances was to not get tested for COVID-19 in India. That is what a majority of Indians did, including me. This is the reason how India achieved herd immunity without any record-keeping.
Simply put, it takes more than a novel coronavirus to kill an Indian. We would have one of the highest natural immunity levels in the world. And no, it is not for any creditable reasons. We breathe one of the most polluted air, drink one of the most contaminated water, eat one of the most adulterated food, live in one of the most unhygienic conditions.
How will a mere virus endanger our lives when we already live in an unlivable country? That is also one of the reasons why the Indian Government has chosen to immunize the country with Covishield and Covaxin, vaccines unproven in Phase 3 trials.
The silence of the Indian Government
The very failure of the Indian Government in every sphere of governance and ensuring citizen well-being is the exact reason for the success in minimizing the pandemic losses.
With the exceptions of Australia and New Zealand, Brazil and Russia, the COVID-19 per capita leader-board shows that the better the governance, the better the living conditions, the lethal is COVID-19. That is the reason why no country in the world calls for an India-model to tackle the pandemic.
The dismal and pathetic Indian Government that goes over-board on toxic positivity is completely silent about publicizing its success in tackling COVID-19. It is for the fear that its bluff will be called in its so-called success story of a single wave of COVID-19. There is no India-model but that of misgovernance.
If India does get a second wave, it only means that the novel coronavirus re-infects.