Post-Covid India: Challenges And Priorities Sam Pitroda
UNIQUE TIMES|July - August 2020
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Post-Covid India: Challenges And Priorities Sam Pitroda
The write-up is prepared by Mansoor Palloor based on Sam Pitroda’s lecture in a webinar organised at Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Development Studies.
Mansoor Palloor

It is the high time to think how the country will adjust with the post-Covid-19 world. In that matter, not only India but also the entire world needs to prepare for a big change. Actually, this crisis is a warning from nature. We, humans, have gone astray. It is the high time to right the wrongs.

It is encouraging to see that all of us have started using digital technology when a demand has emerged because of the present period’s special circumstance.

Considering the difficulty involved in travelling long distance only to meet Rahul Gandhi for few minutes, I used to ask him why couldn’t we use the possibility of digital platform – especially the possibility of video calling.

It is natural to feel that it is impossible to conduct a video conference in a perfectly inclusive manner. But, this crisis period has taught us that the said feeling was wrong.

It is impossible to ignore the former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi when talking about the use of digital technology. Around thirty years have passed since he left us. I feel very fortunate and proud to have had the opportunity to work with him in the area of technology for more than ten years. I had the opportunity to channelize the political will Rajiv Gandhi had, towards IT and telecom missions. It was during that period the seed for Modern India was sown. We now enjoy the fruit of that seed in the forms of the benefits brought in by Liberalisation and Privatisation. We were able to sow seeds like this every year. At first, it was through Indira Gandhi, and later via Rajiv Gandhi. Today, most of us may have forgotten those achievements. It was during the Rajiv Gandhi administration that Polio was completely eradicated.

It is the high time to think how the country will adjust with the postCovid-19 world. In that matter, not only India but also the entire world needs to prepare for a big change. Actually, this crisis is a warning from nature. We, humans, have gone astray. It is the high time to right the wrongs. Day by day, the total number of Covid-19 cases are increasing in the country. This trend exposes the flaws in the national plan to fight the outbreak. The inability to collect data effectively is another big issue. The testing capability is still limited. But, what we hear in the news and elsewhere is very different from what is the reality. Needless to say, there is no surprise in that. Unfortunately, as per my opinion, the number of Covid-19 cases may increase in the coming months. We have to be very careful, and must be ready to face any adversity. Anyway, we should hope for the best. We should not forget the selfless service of doctors and other heath workers. The country owes them.

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July - August 2020