China – A Nemesis of Civilization

It’s a long story, a hypothesis that never required a petri dish, a hypothesis that unraveled in the wild politics of international jungle raj.

Global politics is always “meri lathi, meri bhais”. It is definitely not a place for rational, reasonable, civilized arguments. It was a structure for convenience, and now, its own design has overtaken its foundation.

Post-WW II, the winners had the choice to structure and dominated it. Instead, they introduced inbuilt flaw, of subterfuge and suspicion, of hegemony over rationale, of aggrandizement and deceit. They built a citadel hollowed within its cisterns.

Unfortunately, global politics takes centuries to turn pages. China just fast-forwarded the inbuilt faultlines at a much faster pace than anticipated.

COVID, well, it is easy for all of us to zero in on China’s Complicity with Covid. However, the story goes far beyond 2019. It starts with Tibetan incursions in 1949 and eventual cannibalization in 1959. That jolt to the veto structure in 1949 eventually paralyzed the UN Security council in 1959. A religion as evolved as Buddhism lost its nation. The Tibetans were in exile, while the World watched helplessly, while its claws cut.

There is a lot to the story of the hollowed morals of global politics. I will leave the intermittent pages to be filled in for some other time. However, with evidence in abundance, I see complete inaction from the global moiety on the one who unleashed a weapon of mass destruction. Do you think Saddam deserved what he was meted out? If you agree that he received a termination despite not finding any WMD, what is the World waiting for?

The Delta (Plus) Variant

We saw Delta Variant in India recently. It almost engulfed the fire like a dry forest, about to simmer.

It is highly transmissible, deeply morbid, and highly fatal. It devasted families, took away a lot of near and dear, and maimed several left behind, just like a tornado.

One more thing that is noteworthy – it came like torrential mansion rains, slashed, wiped, and flooded the streets, and leaving behind vast devastation, it left away with the same agility.

One difference, though, monsoon follows a solar cycle, virus follows its mutation cycle. Will it strike again? When will it come again? Will it strike with a vengeance?

Some said we did our best, others said did we? Let not the virus divide us into polar extremes. No good predictions will help, but the answers are within the virus, the hosts and, the milieu that we create, live, and exist exists.

Can we truly predict? Possibly yes, it may not be easy, but we can try and be in the ballpark.

What do we do?

CAB, Covid Appropriate Behavior is the best safeguard next to Vaccine (are the Vaccine Nah sayers around, 😉).

Emergency preparedness is next in order. We, at CovidRxExchange, are working to build Emergency Awareness based on our 3×3 model and the revamped Extended Life Cycle Model.

Do you want to join? Nonmedical folks, too, can do a lot. It’s payback time. Can you step up to give back?

Our 4600 doctors (spread out across multiple states in India and overseas) from CovidRxExchange will be more than eager to get a nonmedical technocrat on their team. We will map you to the areas of your choice. It will be a short assignment, and we can work with your employer to recognize your voluntary efforts (We are a registered nonprofit organization). You can volunteer at your convenience; a few hours per week would make a difference.

Let us know!

Thank you


Dr. Shashank Heda

Dallas, Texas, US
Founder and Chief Executive
CovidRxExchange (a global nonprofit initiative focused on disseminating expertise and insight in the medical care of Covid; We are working relentlessly since March/April 2020).

Beyond the Phylum

Beyond the Phylum

This is the only space where I share my politically resonating ideas on Covid. On all CovidRxExchange forums, I stay apolitical and nonpartisan. From the onset of this pandemic, I am certain that SARS CoV2 is a lab-made virus. Remember the Green Revolution in India (1964 onwards)? Grain self-sufficiency was possible because of the emergence of the hybrid variety (gain of function).

Whether ‘Gain of Function’ was used to develop a weapon of mass destruction or it is an accidental spill will soon be unraveled. However, I want to point few glaring facts and offer few questions –

  1. The pandemic is extremely well controlled in China, at this moment and in the last several months. Of course, the Chinese have not stopped any human interaction except that they maintain Covid Appropriate Behavior (CAB).
  2. The pandemic has taken a significantly devastating toll on the US, the UK, Brazil, and now India. Of course, these are democratic countries, and people enjoy the right to their choices. Thus CAB is a personal choice that has influenced the inundating incidence of covid.
  3. China started vaccinating their citizenry way back be in Sept/October, after the initial results from clinical trials. Of course, the world did not and will not believe if the data is feigned, suppressed, or manipulated. However, if we go by the success of the vaccine, it seems their vaccine worked successfully in their own citizens.
  4. China clamored in the global marketplace to sell its vaccine. No one took their data seriously though scientific literature published it as facts, and media published it as news.
  5. Do you know retroviruses integrate into our genome? Do you know, the human genome has pieces of viral DNA integrated into our genome? Those regions are called introns; they do not express (presumably), and thus we show no obvious viral proteins.
  6. Below, excerpts from BBC Brazil and Chinese Vaccine. Brazil is not the only country that bought the jabs from China; several countries have Chinese-made vaccines for their citizens. The rich or the ones who understand vaccine nuances avoided Chinese-made Vaccines. The first-world countries are a testimony.

My perspectives

If the virus is lab-made, China had the complete genome from the onset. It also understands the protein (moieties) and the (host) receptors and the mechanism of action and pathogenesis.

It is this understanding that propelled China to develop the vaccine before the world could do it. It thus protected its citizen using this vaccine.


  1. Why were facts suppressed during the early course of the disease??
  2. Is China giving the same vaccine to other countries?
  3. What if the Chinese vaccine has iatrogenic DNA that integrates into the human genome?
  4. At the cost of being paranoid, does China know how this integrated DNA will impact the foreign citizenry?
  5. If it has truly shared the same vaccine that China gave its citizen, was a special deal made other than the commercial aspect of the jabs?

It’s complex and confounding, but trust me, anything with China gets you perturbed, if not confused or obfuscate. Its nefarious ways of dominating humanity are above the natural laws of altercations and interactions. I call it ‘generation advantage’, that you and I will not be able to grapple or understand. CCP ( Chinese Communist Party) is a scourge to humanity, not that humanity was ever kind to its phyla. However, this is beyond that.

Shashank Heda
Dallas, Texas

Note: These views are my personal views, have to association with the nonprofit I work for. The blog is not validated for typos or grammatical errors.

Brazil Covid: Deaths plunge after town’s adults vaccinated

Vaccination and Covid Second Surge Wave

Vaccination and Covid Second Surge Wave

The second wave is not just riding; it has mauled and incapacitated life significantly in several states across India. Collectively, our success during this pandemic will be defined by our individual efforts to stop this pandemic. 

So, where are we failing, and what do we do? 

Initially, let us understand why we are failing. Noncompliance with precautions is the primary reason for our failure, followed by complacency. Another reason is nonconformance to standards and presuming we are smarter than established practices, and indulging in Jugad. Let us avoid that this. 

  1. Feeling helpless and : This second surge, with its massive hospitalization of the younger population and inability to find medical/healthcare resources, is a major cause of acute and debilitating apprehension amongst those who are infected recently. 
  2. bored and 
  3. Feeling scared and apprehensive:

Thanks, Nandita. Below is what we discussed. 

Problem Statement:

With the massive resurgence of Covid, healthcare resources are inundated and are under significant stress. It has become common to hear that hospital beds are not available. Hospital beds are not available, and newer faces of clinical problems demand clarity on clinical pathways, decision making, and standardizing care. Hospitals and healthcare facilities are not available. We want to ensure a contingency model that supports remote care, aligns and with the best practices, and concurrently accommodates the limitations and constraints with the clinical settings. 

With the massive resurgence of Covid, healthcare resources are inundated and are under significant stress. It has become common to hear that hospital beds are not available. In addition, emerging clinical scenarios mandate clarity on clinical pathways, decision making, and standardizing care. Where hospitals and health care facilities are not available, we want to ensure a contingency model is created. This contingency model will support remote care, align and support the best practices and concurrently accommodate the limitations and constraints with the clinical settings. 

We are constituting a committee to do due diligence and update clinical pathways and standards of care. Existing guidelines from national and international eminent professional bodies will be reused (where appropriate) or refactored (where needed). We will create content based on gaps in the existing body of knowledge. Content brought from other sources will be credited based on Creative Commons. Content created collectively under CovidRxExchange will be under Creative Commons. 

Join our global pool of experts across multiple regions and countries to capture and refine the clinical problems from your settings. If you wish to join the team as a contributor, we will add you to our three-tier team structure. with adequate support to consume the least amount of time. A RACI will be drafted, and ETA will be tagged to tasks/activities accepted by the contributors (panelists/experts). 

We will publish a plan, progress, and a draft version circulation at the earliest to address the emergent issues. Key issues – 

  1. Clinical Pathways and Disposition
  2. Standardization of Care under nonavailability of resources or resource crunch (nonfinancial and financial). 

Those interested as contributors are welcome to join. Please share your profileexperience within Covid, and contact information on

Or Join Slack on 

What do we do now that we are vaccinated?

Question: Can I visit extended family and friends? 

Some people have been vaccinated against coronavirus, but the risks associated with spending time around others outside of your household haven’t been fully eradicated. 

The current second surge in India, is an example. The 

“The tough part is that right now, I think that we all still need to be vigilant in everything we do, whether we’re vaccinated or not,” said Dr. Ada Stewart, a family physician with Cooperative Health in Columbia, South Carolina, and the president of the American Academy of Family Physicians.

“It does make a difference if you’re vaccinated, especially if you have family members that are vaccinated and then you all can gather in a different way,” Stewart said. “So, there is a slight difference, but everyone still needs to follow the public health measures recommended from the (US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention).”

What to do if you’re vaccinated

Fully vaccinated people can “visit with other fully vaccinated people indoors without wearing masks or physical distancing,” the CDC has said. They can also “visit with unvaccinated people from a single household who are at low risk for severe COVID-19 disease indoors without wearing masks or physical distancing.”

Fully vaccinated people can visit unvaccinated family and friends, but one household at a time, CDC official says. But there are exceptions. If, for example, you’re fully vaccinated and visiting people who are unvaccinated and at high risk for severe disease or death from coronavirus, you should wear a mask and practice physical distancing.

Also, avoid attending medium- or large-size gatherings where you might not know the vaccination status of every person. If you’re vaccinated but have unvaccinated children, know that “we just have to be careful when we’re around them,” Stewart said. “Wash our hands, wash their hands, wear the masks.”

Create ways to help your children remember how to be safe, such as setting up chairs as “physical reminders that going beyond this is more than 6 feet,” said Regina Davis Moss, the associate executive director of health policy and practice at the American Public Health Association.

Tips for unvaccinated adults, grandparents and children

For unvaccinated people who want to visit unvaccinated extended family, virtual gatherings are still best. However, if you’re unvaccinated and choose to visit unvaccinated family, everyone should be outdoors, wearing masks and staying at least 6 feet away from one another.

How vaccinated grandparents should approach visiting loved ones now — advice from Dr. Wen

Whether you’re indoors or outdoors, you’re more likely to contract or spread coronavirus when you are in close contact with people for a total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period, the CDC has said. Therefore, consider the amount of time you’re spending together and the types of activities you do as well, said Krystal Pollitt, an assistant professor of epidemiology at the Yale School of Public Health and an assistant professor in chemical and environmental engineering at the Yale School of Engineering & Applied Science. In addition to coronavirus spreading by respiratory droplets, coronavirus can transmit through air as well.

“Maybe avoiding a meal inside, but still doing that outdoors,” Pollitt suggested. This applies to vaccinated people visiting unvaccinated people — who are at higher risk of serious illness or death from coronavirus — and to unvaccinated people in general.

Get CNN Health’s weekly newsletter

Fully vaccinated grandparents can visit one household of unvaccinated children and grandchildren at a time, indoors and unmasked, if none of them are at high risk of severe disease.

Grandparents who want to see unvaccinated grandchildren from different households “should see the grandchildren separately or do it all outdoors” to mitigate risk, said CNN Medical Analyst Dr. Leana Wen, an emergency physician and visiting professor of health policy and management at the George Washington University Milken Institute School of Public Health. “They should not be mixing them indoors.”

On Vaccine Challenges

Unfortunate but true

Some are presuming this to be a promotion of one country’s vaccine over the other. It has little to do with Brexit. Transparency is crucial. None of the Chinese vaccines had enough transparency. Consequently, they fell through. Vaccines from Russia Sputnik) too had a similar fate until data was under scrutiny.

It is condemnable to see how manufacturers try to make money using national, regional politics. Pharmaceutical Vendors are meant to safeguard their interests. That’s where regulatory and approval bodies come into the picture. They are the ultimate guardians of the system. I hope and trust that every regulatory organization upholds the highest standards of care, and I hope every country provides that political independence to these bodies (without pressurizing them).

Efficacy apart, this video by VoX is intentionally leaning towards J&J. Let me share with you why?

  1. Pfizer was not done in the US alone. In The clinical trials were also done in other countries, including Germany (a major clinical trial base).
  2. The variants prevalent at that moment are ideally captured from the wild and selected for antigen presentation and vaccine development. Pfizer does have the mutants such as N501Y (B1.1.7/UK), which is the base for B1.351 (South Africa), or P.1 (Brazil). The viruses will continue changing genetic composition and thus likely to be less immunogenic as time advances. All vaccines, including J&J, are likely to see this happening.
  3. The intent of a vaccination is to prime the immune system to build a fast and efficient response (with the least reactogenicity). All these vaccines achieve that. They prime your system. J&J is no exception.

The Vaccine Manufacturers are pushing their own vaccines aggressively, leveraging commercials and using promotions like Vox. We, as individuals, want to avoid falling into their internecine advertisement war.

Summarily, let’s take any vaccine that comes your way, and remember, you will have to take further doses eventually, after a few months.

Best Time to Snarl

Covid has been a panacea, a boon for several of the authoritarian regimes across the globe. Several examples abound, and I want to briefly innumerate the credentials of some – 

Russia: Covid or no Covid, repression is the best weapon in the hands of the absolutely corrupt. Navalny is once again behind bars, irrespective of a reason. He would be behind the bar even for killing an ant. 

Myanmar: Suu Kyi is behind the bar for winning 86% votes, a direct threat to the Junta, who has 25% formidable votes forever in a 75% ‘must have’ to change the constitution. 

Hong Kong: Needs no mention, China found it the ripe opportunity to ensnarl and hijack the democracy, and convert it from One Nation Two System to One Nation One System. 

Turkey: Erdogan is losing ground economically (GDP is steadily falling), repression is quickly mounting, popularity is fast eroding and waning at even a faster rate, and nationalist drums beat loud sentiments. 

Syria: it never required any Covid, as if the political covid emerged in Syria, freedom has nothing to do with Covid. 

India: The economy is receding, but since Covid, it has taken a steep slide. Does it matter when Ladhak and Kashmir can rescue the throne? Bank privatization or Farmer’s protest will only spread the virus, or rather virus is the best to impose a unilateral agenda. Debates are no more political perspectives; those are the two polar sides of “For and Against” the nation. 

China: Is China better? At least they have nipped the bud of any rebellion in their Chicken Factory? What’s the Chicken Factory? Well, in poultry, Chicken always gets fed the best; they are always kept cozy, at comfort, in optimal temperature of rest, food, and oxygen. However, they do not have independence, like the free-range. They have a shelf life and so do the ordinary Chinese. 

Thailand: Oh, how can I forget King Vajroylonkorn without paying him an obeisance at his feet? Autocracy cannot breathe. 

Pakistan: It’s a unique country, of have and have nots, the radical and those being fueled to radicalism, never have respite. They work hard to maintain their business of radicalism, of continuously nurtured by the Military. A military continuously sucking the blood of the country. Well, those agnostic to all these are working hard too. Just that they don’t realize they are the lesser children of Allah. Peace be upon him! 

Spain: Catalonia will bounce back. It is waiting for Covid to turn its back. It will be sure. 

The list is long, let my flight resume, and I will visit more places to understand. 

Shashank Heda,

Dallas, Texas

One million Indian bank workers strike against privatization

Stifling of Jack Ma

All along, I thought Jack Ma is the poster child of CCP. Propped up against Giants like Google, it was the local answer to the search engine giant’s global dominance. Developing an alternative to the algorithm-based search was the initial building block. Understanding the slicing and dicing of the data using deep learning, unraveling the patterns – local, national, and global, was fundamental to intelligence gathering. It added to the vast power of the CPC and its gargantuan apparatus.

However, having an independent corporate was a likely future risk. It’s a double-edged sword that can be used to size the enemy to the desired state or … And obviously, it is the same tool that could be used to change China’s political dynamics.

Jack Ma welded that immense power. The differences he expressed at the October 2020 business meeting was sufficient prodromal signs of features to evolve. If at all, the CPC invests wholesome energy for its stability (and possibly its sustainability). Several revolts are squashed, several muted, right in the embryonic stage.

Maslow wrote a fascinating hypothesis of self-actualization. This hypothesis of Self-actualization provides an interesting insight into the motivation behind the human endeavor, drivers, passion, energy that power human pursuit. CPC arrested that self-actualization and rise of the human through the echelons of these principles growth of growth, midway. Chinese society will see another revolution – that of intellectual, cerebral, and the cognoscenti revolting against this fettered structure of the expression. I am no Nostradamus, but if I understood Maslow, and if I have a little understanding of human independence and pursuit, it is possible to delay a revolt but impossible to avoid this emerging future scenario.

Stifling of Jack Ma is not enough!

Shashank Heda
Dallas, Texas

China asks Alibaba to shed media assets, including SCMP

Not Yet…Quad is Still a Paper Tiger

Redux Works Best Executed
Mr. Pompeo, The US Secretary of Defence under President Trump, said, “As partners in this Quad, it is more critical now than ever that we collaborate to protect our people and partners from the CCP’s exploitation, corruption, and coercion.”

The entire world is awaiting this formation amongst the strong nations from Asia to counter China and rise as an appropriate bulwark. China is an existential threat, a clear danger to South East Asia, Asia Major, and not just the continent of Asia but the entire global order. Unless you are a Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) bootlicker, you won’t differ, even if you are the beneficiary of the largesse doled out at the mercy of the state-controlled capitalists.


Quad thus becomes an appropriate response. It is natural for the major forces to align ( the formation being called Quad) and the smaller one to support this alignment. Obviously, China will distract this formation, confuse the smaller players by offering a lure, create ambivalence and ambiguity to weaken the alliance. However, its belligerence will unravel its intentions of not just hegemony but exploitative dominance and servile servitude. Expanding infractions, increasing internal schism, and exploiting the smaller nations have been the key intention since the start. This is evident wherever China has expanded its realms, Nation/states are realizing this reality. Those deeply drowned in debt, such as Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and few African nations, have no way out but to be servile and pander to the CPC’s China.

Too many fronts
China opened too many fronts simultaneously. Ladhak is not alone. However, China’s withdrawal from Ladhak has to be seen from this perspective. Indian’s belligerence and reaction to Ladhak only made it over. Thus, an elaborate articulation of forces encircling China.

However, China’s expansionist ambitions and its belligerence in the South China Sea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Vladivostok, Khabarovsk, Ladhak, Aksai Chin, and Arunachal Pradesh (administered by Beijing and New Delhi, respectively). are not isolated events. To quote the Diplomat,” South China Sea (Vietnam, the Philippines, Taiwan, Malaysia, and Brunei) and the East China Sea (Japan).

Unraveling Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence
These five principles include mutual respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity, mutual non-aggression, non-interference in each other’s internal affairs, equality and mutual benefit, and peaceful coexistence. Prima facie, these can be a sine qua non and a framework for all interactions for peaceful coexistence. However, despite signing this mutual agreement with a tiny nation like Bhutan, China renegade the understanding as it started building aggression in Doklam. India obviously countered and pushed back China. But only a year later, adherence to those principles would be tested in western Bhutan when Chinese troops began building an all-weather road through the Doklam Plateau.

China and South Korea
This lesser known maritime dispute over the Socotra rock in the Yellow Sea with South Korea is as interesting as the international law that dictates that submerged rocks cannot be claimed by nations as their territory. That simmering difference keeps festering along with other outstanding issues.

What is behind Baekdu?
China and North Korea have simmered same as its active volcano. Baekdu Mountain, as referred to in Korea and Changbai in China, has simmered over a long period. South Korea claims sovereignty over the entire Korean peninsula and is thus involved in this fray, whereas North Korea claims this as the birthplace for its supreme leader, Kim Jong-Il. To infuriate and rattle it further, China has proposed it as a UNESCO world heritage site. I feel, by denying ethnicity and its right to its identity, China is playing a bigger merciless game of reducing Korea to insignia.

Rhetorics to Red Herring
Never ignore the enemy and never be complacent of our strengths. I’ll add further, never underestimate our under-preparedness. There are several slips between the cup and the lips, there are several slips, the strategy looks great on the paper, but execution hiccups are a totally different ball game. It is a gargantuan exercise to coordinate these forces and work in tandem as a single unified organism. It will be this weakness that will take a toll. Putting the puzzle pieces into one place is different from having a complete organism working in unison.

So despite the exaggerated strength and the complacency from the union of the four nations, let a few more complex Malabar exercises pass through before we realize a semblance of strength from this union. Until then, it is wise to presume Quad is a paper tiger.

Shashank Heda
Dallas, Texas

The Quad comes of age: In pictures

White Valentine

I wished someone a White Valentine, and they said, what is that? I said it comes every 24 years, and a couple gets to see it 2-3 times in their lifetime.

What is White Valentine?
When you hold your spouse’s/partner’s hand and look outside the window, you feel Valentine, and you see a white blanket of snow that makes it white Valentine! Enjoy your white Valentine. 🎂🎉🎁🎈💐

Well, jokes apart, I haven’t seen such a precipitous drop in temperature in over two decades. Fortunately, it is still cold, and the snow hasn’t yet got converted into ice. In Texas (like in London, yes London, you heard it right) don’t have snow plowers. So the snow melts and forms a layer of ice.

The Arctic Blast
While most Dutchmen are skating over the rivers, ponds and lakes, we in Texas still have water in a fluid state. So, the only place for us to skate or walk is on the roads. No, Dallas, Houston, Austin, or San Antonio are not desert areas, as claimed by this BBC report, and we do see scorching heat, sometimes reaching 110 plus F, that lasts a few weeks. However, temperatures as low as this are very, very uncommon.

Shivering to death
No, we are not. Our internal thermostats are adjusted between 68-72 F, and we hardly realize it. Besides, an evening next to the gas-fired fireplace provides an enchanting time with family.

Flora and fauna
Yes, they definitely have. Even the deciduous trees have dropped their leaves. That saves them from extreme temperatures and transmission loss. I saw some unusual birds in the cedar trees; I believe the birds were clamoring for a warm place. I felt hapless and helpless that I could not shelter them in. My Elephant Ear plant was completely devastated despite covering it with appropriate warmth. In hindsight, I feel I should have trimmed those gorgeous leaves from the ground, but at 2′ wide, they looked so alluring, and I resisted the temptation of trimming. Yes, they are freezing, and I may lose a few more, like the Texas Blue Bonnet’s recently emerging seedlings. Fortunately, I have some seeds available that I can reseed but not sure if the blast will recur and when.

Yes, I will be having lovely Indian tea with cardamom and ginger, and I wish you too should sip and enjoy this rare White Valentine with your Valentine!

Shashank Heda
Dallas, Texas

Note: I chronicled this blog, especially for those who are outside Texas. Below excerpts from BBC

Texas is known for its sprawling deserts and excruciating heatwaves – but right now, it’s blanketed in a thick layer of ice.
The state is seeing some of its coldest temperatures in more than 30 years, with some areas breaking records that are more than a century old.

Parts of Texas hit 0F (-18C) on Sunday, and weather warnings are going to stay in place through the week. So why is this normally boiling state suddenly freezing over?

US cold snap: Why is Texas seeing Arctic temperatures?

Why I Ignored Farmer’s Protest

Farmer’s ongoing protests in the North have caught the attention, not just nationally but globally. Rheanna or Rita has not catapulted it to global attention. If you see this news from Nikkei Asia, the protest has been reported since September 2020. Just imagine, Corona had hardly receded, but these farmers, notwithstanding the implications of Covid, started aggregating and protesting.

Are farmers’ demands rational?
Irrespective of their demands being rational or not, the agricultural sector needs renovation and infrastructure investment. In 2019, I wrote an article on using strategies and execution to rejig the entire supply chain towards increasing the shelf life (of the produce), exactly the same way as the shelf life of grains. In a nutshell, the recommended changes were increasing rainwater conservation to increase the depleting table of water, adding several smaller catchments in areas with high rainfall or runoffs, strategies for spreading crops across varieties, harvesting and storage facilities, and consumer education on consumption. I am not sure if these changes across the value chain are reflected in the bill in some of the other forms. Farming is the foundation of the food chain, and supporting farming is important to nations’ critical infrastructure and resilience. My forefathers, like most of ours, owned small farming land (by American standard). Until her death, my grandmother lived in our village. Then why did i ignore the farmers’ protest?

Ideological intolerance
Those who were part of CovidRXExchange may recollect that our efforts were primarily focused on India despite being global. As a pro-bono activity, several doctors and intellectuals invested their time, efforts, and expertise to mitigate the clinical impact of Covid. These contributions were well recognized at several levels of bureaucracy, health, and planning and reflected in covid patients’ upliftment. The sole reason for citing this is that despite being away from the birthplace, we have always attached, but we come with a detachment and see a differing perspective.

I was trolled, belittled, and almost bullied 2-3 years back by my schoolmate when I wrote a critical piece. He and I shared a class bench. Anything against BJP is considered anti-national. You are immediately labeled a Kafir if you oppose or think of opposing any of their ideologies. In fact, this friend also deeply questioned my own commitment to the country, and of course, I was labeled as being under the influence of the Britishers (for reading BBC, the reference cited herein is from Nikkei Asia Review, a Japanese daily, and it is costly, not free). Like religious intolerance, ideological intolerance is fast sweeping India. India is a complex and profoundly diverse country. It is hard to manage the inbuilt controversies if we tend to do with an iron fist. Farmers’ protest is no different in that sense because it is intense in the North but without massive support elsewhere. It will be wrong to say their demands are irrational, but there must be a right way to negotiate and find a sweet spot, a balance that caters to the roadmap. Radical changes always meet resistance, and incremental changes have better adoption.

Trust all the stakeholders strike the right balance. Good luck with that!

Shashank Heda
Dallas, Texas

India braces for mass protests over contentious farm bills