Editorial: In Kashmir, COVID-19 lockdown is requirement, not choice

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These are horrendous hours.

The Kashmir Walla editorial is once a week tradition but, in these terrifying times, we are breaking away from this tradition and publishing a second editorial.

This second editorial is an alarm over the incompetent measures announced by the Jammu and Kashmir Administration this week when it refused to impose a lockdown. The 5-point measures announced by the administration are not the effective and immediate containment strategy. Rather, these 5-points are a long-term plan which should have always been in place. The need for this darkest hour is drastic, to break the chain and do that immediately. 

Breaking the chain is important to choke the growing number of daily cases. It is important to break the chain before the rising tide of infections overwhelms Kashmir’s fragile healthcare infrastructure. We can’t afford to be another Delhi which despite its strong healthcare infrastructure is gasping for oxygen. To break the chain, two things are urgently needed: lockdown and shutting the airport which is the transit for hundreds of infections on a daily basis. The virus is moving fast and the decision to lockdown the cities and airport has to be faster. 

The lockdown is not a choice; it is the immediate requirement. The economic cost of the lockdown should not override the demands of the existing crisis. A short and swift lockdown is a preemptive measure aimed at breaking the chain. The lockdown should be the first move; not the card to be played when signs of life are defeated.

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