Meghalaya must have taken a correct decision to shut down educational institutes as preventive measures in the wake of threat being posed by coronavirus across the globe.
But the million dollar question arises, “Can Meghalaya close down markets and public transport services as these are public places with large gathering of people who come into contact with each other everyday?”
More than closing down schools and colleges, there are other concerns too, that the Meghalaya government has to immediately act as preventive measures.
Apart from closing down schools and colleges, public buses and taxis and market places are let free without precautionary measures.
Not to talk about shutting down market places, but steps should have been taken to sanitize market places like Ïewduh, Khyndai Lad, Polo, Laitumkhrah, shopping malls and other market places.
Closing down market will undoubtedly affect the havenots who are earning from hand to mouth.
The haves can afford buying essential commodities in bulk for many months even if markets are closed, but poor families are the ones who will bear the brunt.
Public buses, taxis have not been sanitized yet, and these public vehicles and people travelling by these vehicles are more vulnerable as they are loaded with full passengers who come into contact with each other closely.
In fact the government is talking about social distancing as part of precautionary measure.
When inquired from conductors of these buses, and taxi drivers, they said, they have not used any spray to sanitize their buses and taxis.
The Meghalaya government on Monday has closed down all educational institutes in the State, except ongoing examinations.
The government has also suspended using of biometric attendance for employees.
But it is an irony that the government has not realized the need to sanitize ATM machines as they are also being touched by hundreds of people everyday when they went to take out cash.
“It is true that ATM machines should be sanitized but no advisory yet has been issued from the government to various banks,” an official said on Tuesday.
Though no case of Coronavirus has been detected so far, yet the State Government and its people cannot afford to be complacent.