Covid-19 is the biggest buzzword of 2020. Are you tired of it being constantly reminded about it through phone calls, forwards, notifications, and news? As if these are not enough, I do dream about it as the virus has definitely occupied my mind and thoughts. So, what do I do? As always, I turned up to my kid brother and he suggested me to binge on Chernobyl.
Just a quick background, Chernobyl nuclear disaster happened in April 1986 in the Soviet Union and made a large portion of the country inhabitable. The historians claim that it was one of the major reasons for the split of the continent. Chernobyl and the sacrifice of thousands of laborers, scientists, and soldiers made nuclear reactor safety normal what they are today across the world.
Do watch the five-episodes series streaming on Hotstar.
What sets it apart is the huge amount of homework done in making the series, the collection of facts, events, the fast-pace, the timing, the brilliant acting by the lead as well as supporting team, and an honest showcase of emotions and dilemmas.
Just like Covid, the government and the scientists faced the crisis of Chernobyl for the first time. They had no reference database to draw inference from. They did what they thought was the best for everyone, though it made many suffer and die. The laborers, the miners, the junior operators were killed knowingly to save the so-called important lives. Similarly, in Covid crisis, the most powerful image is of the migrant laborers walking barefoot to reach their home. One who builds cities were left stranded on footpaths to suffer and die. The people on the frontline were misguided and not given their due. Today, too, doctors who are constantly at the risk because of the exposure are not paid in many hospitals. Just like today, in order to hide its inefficiency, the problem was not stated with honesty until it became insurmountable.
Nature was disrespected then too, the pets shot down, the livestock burnt, and nature forced us to be in lockdown to heal itself now. Humans are the most selfish of the species, they think they are entitled to kill, to experiment on animals, be it shooting them so that infection is contained, or testing the vaccines on them, We keep forgetting that, just like animals, we too are mortal. The facts and numbers were hidden by the authority, the people were threatened to lie, punished for speaking the truth just the way it is happening in China now.
In the end, persistence and perseverance won, though not without sacrifice. Chernobyl gives us the much-needed hope in the days of despair.
This too shall pass! But, how many crises we have to face to learn the basics? I sincerely hope that in post-Covid era, humans co-exist with nature, rather than foolishly trying to claim the authority. Otherwise, nature will keep us reminding who is the boss in the form of earthquakes, floods, and pandemics.
Stay Home Stay Safe.