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Coronavirus a reminder of how futile religious barriers are: Arvind Kejriwal

"It occurred to me that tomorrow the life of a Hindu patient, who is in a serious condition, might be saved due to a Muslim's plasma. Or a Muslim patient's life will perhaps be saved due to the plasma of a Hindu," Arvind Kejriwal said.

Written by Sourav Roy Barman | New Delhi | Updated: April 26, 2020 7:47:11 pm
arvind kejriwal on coronavirus, arvind kejriwal on delhi lockdown, delhi news, india lockdown, plasma therapy, hindu muslim plasma therapy, indian express Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal briefed media on coronavirus situation in state in a video conferencing session. (File Photo)

The novel coronavirus pandemic is a reminder of the futility of religious barriers among people, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said Sunday, pointing out how plasma therapy works irrespective of the religion of the donor and the patient.

Kejriwal said a patient who was in a serious condition till Saturday night at the LNJP Hospital is showing signs of recovery after undergoing plasma therapy. Previously, six more patients had undergone plasma therapy in Delhi government hospitals as part of clinical trials that, authorities said, were considerably successful.

Plasma therapy uses antibodies found in the blood of people who have recovered from the infection (or convalesced), to treat infected patients. Plasma is a component of blood.

Mortality rates drop sharply in parts of India, bucking coronavirus trend Poor and needy persons being served food at a Delhi Congress office during ongoing COVID-19 lockdown in New Delhi, Thursday.

“It occurred to me that tomorrow the life of a Hindu patient, who is in a serious condition, might be saved due to a Muslim’s plasma. Or a Muslim patient’s life will perhaps be saved due to the plasma of a Hindu. The almighty did not put up walls between us. Ye dharam, wo dharam, kisi prakar ki khai nahi paida ki, yw toh humne banayi hai (This religion, that religion, God did not create these divisions, we made them),” Kejriwal said.

Till mid April, the Delhi’s government’s health bulletin had a separate column detailing the positive cases emerging out of the markaz attendees. Subsequently, after widespread criticism, the cases were clubbed under the category ‘special operations’, in line with the WHO’s guideline that bars religious profiling of coronavirus patients.

“Corona affects both Hindus and Muslims. And the plasma of our body saves lives irrespective of religions. Then why have we created these walls? We should at least learn from the pandemic. If we work together, irrespective of religious differences, no force can defeat this country. But if we keep fighting among ourselves, there is no hope,” Kejriwal said Sunday.

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During his briefing, which was live-streamed, the CM said that the week gone by was relatively better in terms of new cases, deaths and recoveries. There were 622 new cases, as against 850 registered the week before it. Moreover, 580 people recovered from the disease in the eighth week, as against 260 in the seventh, Kejriwal said.

Number of deaths stood at nine as opposed to 21 in the seventh week. “If we follow the lockdown rules, I sincerely hope that we will be able to defeat this pandemic,” he added.

Meanwhile, the CM also announced that apart from allowing non-essential standalone or neighbourhood shops or those present in residential complexes of non-containment zones to open, as announced Saturday evening, no other relaxation will be offered till May 3.

“Markets, malls, shopping complexes will remain shut. In the containment zones, everything will remain shut. We are not going to allow any more relaxations in Delhi till May 3. We are going through a difficult phase and have managed to contain the situation after a lot of hard work. After May 3, depending on what the Union government decides, we will decide our future course of action,” he said.

Delhi with 2,625 confirmed coronavirus cases and 54 deaths is third in the line of the worst-affected states, only behind Maharashtra (7,628 cases and 323 deaths) and Gujarat (3,071 cases and 133 deaths).

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