When the stars threw down their spears And water’d heaven with their tears: Did he smile his work to see? Did he who made the Lamb make thee?
- The Tyger by William Blake
Can the COVID-19 pandemic be compared to big game hunting? Is the virus really comparable to a maneating tiger on the prowl?
Yes, says a WhatsApp forward. It is as if a maneater has escaped from the forest. And an alert has been sounded…read on.
Central Government: We alerted people at the right time. Till the tiger starves to death, people should stay safe and stay at home.
State Government: It is most probably not a tiger. It could be a wolf. But the state government stands by you. We have provided containment cages for people to stay put. Stay safe.
People: Busy researching on the maneater. How many types of maneaters are there, what kind of human beings do they like to devour and what are the ways to escape or evade the maneater etc.
Media: Busy reporting the movement of the maneater; how it has moved from one place to another; how many it killed during the day and every evening TV channels are inviting big game hunters to discuss their past experience of catching tigers and how this maneater can be trapped.
Central Govt supporters: State Governments are not feeding correct information about the sighting of the tiger. They are not cooperating with the central hunters sent from Delhi and the goats and the chicken sent to the states to lure the tiger have been sold by corrupt state governments.
State Govt supporters: The goats and chicken sent by Delhi to trap the tiger are underweight and diseased, which is why the tiger is showing no interest in devouring them. It is the central government’s fault for delaying dispatch of proper firearms.
Prime Minister: The PM is assuring people that all possible steps to keep them safe have been taken. But people should not drop their guard and become careless. They should preferably keep awake at night and keep the lights on. They should also bang pots and pans and recite Hanuman Chalisa to keep the tiger at bay.
Mamata Banerjee: She is so worried that she is often going out without any weapon to kill the tiger. Her worried personal staff with great difficulty are pleading and persuading her to return.
West Bengal Governor: He is busy writing one short story on the tiger every day. He has indicated his inclination to write a novel also. To the media he has said that he wants to help in killing the tiger but the state government has turned a deaf ear to his pleas. He definitely feels insulted.
Chief Secretary: Every day at the media briefing is informing the number of people who have lost their limbs to the tiger. But even after losing their limbs, the victims are happy having recovered and have applauded the state government for the arrangements.
ICMR: Is busy preparing infographs and charts showing how many people have so far been eaten by the tiger; how long it will remain hungry and after how many kills it will be satiated. Its apps also show the route followed by the maneater. But it is also clueless about how to kill the tiger.