LOCKDOWN LOOKBACK Dauntless woman IAS officer dared corona, tension with a smiling face

LOCKDOWN LOOKBACK Dauntless woman IAS officer dared corona, tension with a smiling face


Govil is one of those officers who made all preliminary arrangements for fighting the virus. In January, when the number of patients had begun to shoot up in Italy, the state government started preparations for dealing with any emergency situation. She says those who had landed from abroad at Bhopal and Indore airports were asked to fill in a form.

As the number of patients increased in the country after March, an order was issued giving some special powers to chief medical and health officers and civil and surgeons. She says all resources were put together from March to fight the disease. Govil says a doctor in Washington Manoj Jain helped a lot. Some people in Indore introduced her to the doctor.

As the number of patients was rising in other parts of the country, it was clear that the virus would enter the state. She says on March 20, when the first case of corona was reported from Jabalpur, the real battle against corona began. Initially, there was a shortage of facilities for testing. Because of that, the test reports were coming late. She says arrangements were made for testing patients. Preparations for arranging PPE kits, masks and gloves began from March. There were problems in getting those items, since they were in demand. The higher-ups in the government gave whole-hearted support, so the problems did not crop up that way as was expected.

In the meantime, the meetings were held regularly. Doctors were also coming from Indore. Govil says, “It was from then that corona began to creep into the health department. Director of the department J Vijay Kumar was down was fever and tested positive for covid-19 on April 2.” She, too, tested positive and attended the Chief Minister’s video conference from home. Govil had to face a lot of difficulties. She, however, overcame them with the help of her friends. She says people have to learn how to live with corona. Wearing masks and sanitising hands should be part of daily life.

Besides that, everybody must learn how to honour Mother Nature. Govil says, “Nature returns to us what we give her. This is the right time to realise that!”



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