Veteran Indian author Arundhati Roy has termed the ongoing catastrophic Covid-19 crisis a come against humanity while she slammed the Indian government's handling of the situation.
" The government has failed. Perhaps 'failed' is an inaccurate word, because what we are witnessing is not criminal negligence, but an outright crime against humanity," she wrote in an article for The Guardian.
Arundhati questioned why the country is still not prepared to tackle the oxygen crisis despite warnings from experts earlier in 2020.
"Try not to pay attention to the fact that the possibility of a dire shortage of oxygen had been flagged as far back as April 2020, and then again in November by a committee set up by the government itself. Try not to wonder why even Delhi's biggest hospitals don't have their own oxygen-generating plants. ," she wrote.
The award-winning writer also highlighted the major disparity between economic classes in India is a force behind crisis mismanagement.
"Things will settle down eventually. Of course, they will. But we don't know who among us will survive to see that day. The rich will breathe easier. The poor will not," her article read.
She remarked that the discrimination behind vaccine application is caused by the Modi government which pushed more and more people into poverty.
"Under Modi, India's economy has been hollowed out, and hundreds of millions of people who were already living precarious lives have been pushed into abject poverty. It is impossible to expect that families on the verge of starvation will pay most of a month's income to have themselves vaccinated," she wrote.
Arundhati Roy also criticised the government decision to allow religious ceremonies like Kumbhmela enabling thousands of people to break health guidelines.
She further noted that while the world is focused on Delhi's oxygen shortage situation in other parts of the country is grim too.
"If Delhi is breaking down, what should we imagine is happening in villages in Bihar, in Uttar Pradesh, in Madhya Pradesh? Where tens of millions of workers from the cities, carrying the virus with them, are fleeing home to their families," wrote Arundhati.
She opined that the Covid-19 crisis that has crippled India should be tackled by a capable body with all stakeholders' representation.
"Control and administration of the pandemic will need to pass into the hands of some sort of non-partisan body consisting of members of the ruling party, members of the opposition, and health and public policy experts," she wrote.
However, Arundhati also said the government is incapable of leading out of the current disaster as "one man (Narendra Modi) makes all the decisions in this government".
"That man is dangerous – and not very bright," she added.