Need of Resetting Our Priorities
The global pandemic CoViD-19 has changed the face of the world. After the 1918 Spanish Flu, it is for the first time that the world has experienced such a catastrophic impact of an infectious disease. It has affected the mankind to such an extent that an unexpected and unanticipated change has already come in all dimensions of our daily life. It has forced every one of us to adjust ourselves to the inevitable changes in our life style so as to thrive through these turbulent times. It has also raised a number of questions to our understandings, beliefs and ideas that we might have been living with for generations. The pandemic has set a new atmosphere of thoughts wherein we must have to reassess our priorities so that we may reassign values to our activities both in individual and collective, social and community life.
Contrary to our traditional life style, the pandemic has taught us to adjust to changing need of ‘minimizing contact’ between individuals which is expected to have serious implications in future not only with respect to inter-personal relationships but also on diverse aspects including business, education and culture, wherein emphasis will be more on delivery of goods and services with ‘minimum physical contact’ or in a ‘hands-free’ manner.
In the education front, the pandemic has compelled us to adapt open and distance learning strategies in order to minimize the loss that the students may face due to the lengthening lockdowns and discontinuities in the normal academic activities. While on one hand, this has forced us to realise the need of strengthening the ICT facilities and increasing access to such facilities for the masses, on the other hand, it has also emphasized on the need of a complete reorientation of our educational pedagogy and delivery system. Now onwards, e-learning and online teaching will be an integral part of the lesson delivery method to be adapted in all the educational institutions irrespective of the level and the discipline, necessitating adoption of blended learning as the method of choice all over.
The CoViD-19 pandemic has also brought to the fore the importance and the urgent need of strengthening our health infrastructure as well as the necessity of our preparedness to face such an emergency again in the future. It has also highlighted the importance of science education and research to find solutions to the emerging problems faced by humanity as a consequence of limitless activities in the name of growth and prosperity. If we are to take a lesson from the current situation, all the governments need to reallocate resources, particularly to increase allocation of funds to a great extent in healthcare, education and scientific research.
Let us hope that we will be able to convert the challenges posed before us by the pandemic to opportunities in the near future so that we may see ‘new light at the end of the tunnel’ that would bring everlasting peace and prosperity to our life.