Weekend Reads:

  1. “A forum of scientific advisers set up by the government warned Indian officials in early March of a new and more contagious variant of the coronavirus taking hold in the country, five scientists who are part of the forum told Reuters. Despite the warning, four of the scientists said the federal government did not seek to impose major restrictions to stop the spread of the virus,” report Devjyot Ghoshal and Krishna Das for Reuters..
  2. “It’s best to state this simply: Narendra Modi needs to go. Amit Shah needs to go. Ajay Mohan Bisht aka Yogi Adityanath needs to go,” writes Ruchir Joshi in The Telegraph. “The bunch of integrity-free incompetents Mr Modi has gathered around him as his ministers all need to go. In order for the country to launch the mammoth operation of recovery and repair needed for our survival, the departure of these people from positions of power needs to happen immediately — tomorrow is too late, yesterday would have been better.”
  3. “Crematories are so full of bodies, it’s as if a war just happened. Fires burn around the clock. Many places are holding mass cremations, dozens at a time, and at night, in certain areas of New Delhi, the sky glows. Sickness and death are everywhere,” writes Jeffrey Gettleman in The New York Times. “I’m sitting in my apartment waiting to catch the disease. That’s what it feels like right now in New Delhi with the world’s worst coronavirus crisis advancing around us. It is out there, I am in here, and I feel like it’s only a matter of time before I, too, get sick.”
  4. ‘We are witnessing a crime against humanity’: Arundhati Roy on India’s Covid catastrophe in The Guardian.
  5. Salik Ahmad reports for Article-14.com on how citizens are stepping into the gaping holes left behind by the Indian government in response to the coronavirus crisis.
  6. “There is no logic of incentives or cross-subsidies or a free market in these decisions. There is no epidemiological logic. This is ad hoc social Darwinism. The strong do what they can, the weak suffer what they must. A perfect metaphor for our healthcare system,” writes Pratap Bhanu Mehta in The Indian Express, on India’s vaccine plan.
  7. In The Wire, Karan Thapar has 35 questions for K VijayRaghavan, VK Paul and Balram Bhargava, the three scientists who have spoken on behalf of the Indian government.
  8. Prachi Gupta in The Atlantic writes on the anxiety of Indian-Americans as their families in India are ravaged by the virus.
  9. “May is going to be horrible in India. June is going to be hard. If we take the steps outlined here, we are going to see real progress in June, and, by July, things may be meaningfully better. But if we do these things in a half-hearted manner now, the nightmare that India is living through now will last longer,” writes Ashish K Jha in The Hindustan Times.
  10. In Fiftytwo.in, Kiran Kumbha recounts “the remarkable trajectory of modern medicine (or biomedicine) in colonial India, ending in its political triumph at independence”.

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