Blog – Opinions & Repercussions – Pandemic in a nutshell

By Shahroze Ali Khan
May 29, 2020

“This is all part of a greater plan and the crisis is not what we are being told it is. There is whatsoever no Corona in the country and we are just being terrorized for something we do not currently understand. Masks, gloves and sanitary products consumption has skyrocketed in the past few months and I have not witnessed a single case of corona in any of my acquaintances”.

“Corona? What Corona? It’s all a game plan to reduce pollution.”

“My uncle died of a heart attack and the hospital offered us some money and asked us to let them put the case under corona deaths.”

In the Eid holidays, I happened to meet a number of people and these are some common views that I encountered. Majority of the people think that the whole pandemic that the world is facing is just a hoax and the doctors and nurses who I personally think are national heroes, are just pretending to be on the frontlines when in fact there is no such threat of the virus.

We think that education broadens our perspectives and gives us new lenses to explore the world, but ironically all these views are from well educated people. On the other hand I see videos of women from far flung villages of Punjab, who only have little to none formal education and yet sound more “educated” than these people. These women have stronger faith in Allah and are doing everything to protect themselves and their children from the illness according to the directions given by the government.

This gap in understanding of the situation makes me question where does the fault lie. Is it our education system or is it in the upbringing that we have learnt to question the tangible facts. Before Eid and even now, our markets were crowded to a point that it was hard to find a parking spot and the situation is no different now. Whereas in villages it’s a whole different story.

“We only go out to get the necessary grocery items and if someone has to go out to work, we make sure that he or she is not coming in very close contact to any of the family members’, this woman from a village was saying in a video.

Recently, a doctor friend of mine got so frustrated with these public views that she took it to social media and said that okay yes it’s all a hoax and we are taking it so far that we wear N95 and N97 masks, in which we can hardly breathe just to convince the public that something bad is going on. Ah the irony where in times like these a doctor has to make sarcastic remarks to be taken seriously by the public

If we only talk about our country, Coronavirus is a bitter reality, although the severity of it might be debatable. If the government had to impose a lockdown knowing that we are a third world country and are not able to cope up with the setback that the lockdown will hit us with, with so many people getting unemployed, businesses drowning, economy crashing, daily wage earners standing on roads, there must be threat bigger than all these. And what can be a bigger threat than a life-threatening disease roaming the roads like goons which we don’t want to get in a tussle with.

Sometimes affliction inevitably comes our way. The Quran teaches Muslims to see life’s difficult circumstances as a test — they are temporary hardships to strengthen us (2:153-157). Such a perspective allows Muslims to show resilience in times of hardship and tribulation, with sufficient strength to make it to the other side intact.

Further, Prophet Muhammad advised on quarantine:

“If you hear of an outbreak of plague in a land, do not enter it; if the plague outbreaks out in a place while you are in it, do not leave that place.”

God made us the best of all living beings, gave us Sha’oor so we can differentiate between right and wrong. If people die, on judgement day, we indeed will be held accountable for not being cautious enough, for not taking the preventive measures that we could have taken. Death of one person is the death of a whole family and we have to ask ourselves whether or not we are able to carry that burden on our shoulders.