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Science, truth are key to tackling COVID-19 crisis, says Azim Premji at RSS lecture

RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat and spiritual guru Jaggi Vasudev are among the speakers for the online lecture series organised by the Sangh and civil society groups.

May 13, 2021 / 10:36 AM IST
Azim Premji, Founder of Wipro

Azim Premji, Founder of Wipro

Wipro Group founder Azim Premji has said good science and confronting the truth about the extent of the spread are vital to tackling the coronavirus crisis and ensuring that it is not repeated.

The industrialist and philanthropist was speaking at "Positivity Unlimited", a five-day virtual lecture series organised by the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), the ideological parent of the BJP.

“First, we must act with the greatest of speed on all fronts and these actions must be based on good science. Actions that are not based on science in reality have a detrimental effect on the cause," Premji said.

India has been hammered by the second coronavirus wave that has pushed daily infections and deaths to a record high, with patients left struggling for hospital beds, life-saving drugs and medical oxygen. The situation has improved a bit in the last few days, with daily infections slowing down but the fear is that the virus has spread to smalls towns and villages, where healthcare facilities are almost negligible.

India's total tally of Covid-19 cases surged to 2,37,03,665 with 3,62,727 new infections, according to the Union Health Ministry data updated on Thursday. The death count increased to 2,58,317 with 4,120 new fatalities in last 24 hours.

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COVID-19 Vaccine

Frequently Asked Questions

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How does a vaccine work?

A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.

How many types of vaccines are there?

There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.

What does it take to develop a vaccine of this kind?

Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.

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“At the core of the idea of good science is the matter of being willing to accept and confront the truth. So, we must confront this crisis, its scale, its spread and its depth truthfully. Science and truth are the foundation on which we can tackle this crisis and ensure that it is not repeated,” Premji said in his two-minute video.

RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat and spiritual guru Jaggi Vasudev are among the speakers for the series organised by the Sangh and other civil society groups to infuse confidence and positivity among people as they fight the COVID-19 pandemic, RSS had said in a statement.

The event is coordinated by the 'Covid Response Team' (CRT), an outfit formed by the RSS and its affiliates in association with various civil services groups.

Premji said there was a need for unity for the most vulnerable in the society and the need for restructuring society and economy to create a more equal society. “If we are to look at villages and those in poverty, it is not only the pandemic but also the economic effects that are devastating people’s lives," he said.

These lectures are being broadcasted live on the Facebook page of the Sangh's communication arm Vishaw Samwad Kendra and its YouTube page. This lecture series will also be relayed to people across the country and the world through a string of over 100 like-minded news portals as well as many important media platforms to enhance the reach and bring about positivity, the RSS said.

The lecture series is also being aired on national public broadcaster Doordarshan National every day this week.

(Inputs from PTI)
Moneycontrol News
first published: May 13, 2021 10:21 am

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