What if I am tested : Looking at COVID-19 in Tamenglong The facts and habits of Tamenglong people during the Covid-19 pandemic

Jimmy Pamei
About a month or so, Tamenglong HQs has seen rapid transmission of Covid 19. People were so scared of it and had not ventured out to the bazar for some days. There are orders of containment zones too from the District Administration from time to time. People have seen ambulances transporting the Covid 19 positive patients to the Quarantine Centres.
Social media is flooded with information about the ‘positive’ cases in the town. Meanwhile the public is taking precautions for themselves by consuming various juices and fruits that are available locally. Pharmacies are queued up with people demanding Zincovit, Limcee Vitamins, Becosule tablets and the sorts.
The Health Workers are working round the clock in transporting, checking, testing and caring  for the Covid patients.
The District Administration is stretched to the limit while dealing with this pandemic. Each ward has flashed in the local newspapers that there shall be no sojourners in their own area, or that any activity going against the resolutions will be dealt with very firmly.
Just then, just a few days back a man succumbed to Covid-19. However bad the news was, the general public had to swallow it. Before their tension was over, the Medical Report came that a whole family tested positive at one Ward of the town.
The next day, news report said that Tamenglong has seen another 8 or 10 more positive patients adding to the pandemic list. Even people of those Wards that were guarded strictly by the Women Society began to get tested positive. If someone dies, it is always suspected as ‘it is it’!
Church Services are cancelled, but mini Churches began to crop up at homes. Every head of the family is now their Pastor or catechist. Even the worst sinner has a chance of hearing the scripture now.
The religious institutions and schools are now floated online. Students are fed up with staying at home. A little girl student said “I long to see my Ma’am again.’
When someone is sick with fever he is looked upon with suspicion. If one happens to have the flu he will clarify that ‘this time of the year it’s a routine kind of thing for me !’
Meanwhile people will go for steaming, prepare juices of lemon, ginger, turmeric, tulsi, ‘nongmangkha’, gooseberry, ‘lingtu’, ‘majengluan’ or consume daily bits of garlic to keep their immunity strong.
Autumn has arrived, but there is still no news that a Covid vaccine is at a pharmacy. An educated leader will console the people ‘we should now learn to live with the Covid.’ It’s a prayer of every household to get one of these vaccines, but it simply is not available. Now, a bit of ‘indifference’ towards the pandemic has invaded the mind of the general public. As this autumn season sets in, it’s usual that cold and flu accompany it.
Some have bravely declared “I have this flu now. If, I for one, am tested for Covid-19, I will be positive!’