Will India See A Third Wave of Covid-19

When India failed to adequately prepare for the second wave of COVID-19, people had to face the consequences of the infection that were ugly and disastrous. Casualties broke all the records of history (nearly 2.5 lacs deaths so far). And now, the inevitable third wave of coronavirus infection is here with a lot of confusion, speculation and what not.

What is a ‘WAVE’ in Pandemic?

As far as a pandemic is concerned, the definition of wave cannot be found in textbooks. In history, the word was used for the season of some particular disease if it would occur for a longer period of time. Several infectious diseases used to rise and fall at the frequency of certain periods of time. The term ‘WAVE’ defined the rise and fall in the graph of the disease.

How Would We Identify A Third of COVID-19?

First Wave

Coronavirus emerged from Wuhan (China) in early December, 2019 and gradually started grasping the entire world in its deadly claws. It barged into India in March 2020 with a bang. This was the first wave of COVID-19 which brought with it several new terms for the general public like pandemic, covid crisis, lockdown, quarantine, social distancing, immunity and so on. This wave blew away people’s sources of income, savings, mental peace, confidence, physical as well as mental health. The biggest loss that people suffered was the loss of their loved ones.

Second Wave

After the plight of the first wave of COVID-19, when things got somewhat better, people started trying to stand on their feet afresh and life seemed to be back on track once again. They started to believe that the pandemic had come to an end and became careless, which proved to be even more fatal and resulted in the second wave of the pandemic in India. Five states of India, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Kerala, Chhattisgarh and Tamilnadu had 68% of the total active cases resulting in the most number of casualties. Second wave was much more dreadful than the previous one. The covidiots made the disease spread at four times the rate as compared to the first wave. This time the covid-crisis continued till the middle of June.

Third Wave

As of now, the COVID-19 cases have declined (41,831 from 4.16 lacs per day increase) all over India, after a very painful experience of the second wave. Vaccination drives at mass level across India (40.1 lac doses each day on an average) is the only hope for delaying the third wave of COVID-19 in the country. As per the prediction by Dr Randeep Guleria, Director of All India Institute of Medical Sciences, there are chances of a third wave of Covid-19 in India in September to October, this year. But it has also been expected that more than half of the country’s population has developed antibodies besides the rapid vaccination drive being carried on throughout the country.

Is the third wave inevitable?

It was a clear and concrete fact that no one else was responsible for the uncanniness of the second wave, but us. Several covidiots took the virus for granted and stopped following the COVID protocols. The third wave will undoubtedly hit India if this is repeated.

Lockdown is not a permanent solution either, as people are now off their savings and the states have no option but to gradually lift the lockdown. So, it can be clearly imagined that there is a distinct possibility of the third wave. It is difficult to predict when it will come or what its intensity will be, but it will occur. But considering the lessons we have learnt during the first and second waves, this one can definitely be avoided.

Wearing masks, using hand sanitizers, taking care of immunity and maintaining social distancing have become a part of people’s daily lives. They are even ready to be called paranoids, because being safe and avoiding the dreadful disaster caused by Coronavirus is the priority today.

The possible intensity of the third wave

Despite applying all the precautions & measures, if the third wave hits India, it will certainly be much weaker than the previous one. Strong immunity and vaccination will keep a check on the ill effects of coronavirus. Currently the existing delta and delta plus variants, do not have much difference. It might not infect a very large fraction of the population, unless the virus mutates in a way that it finds a way to trespass the immune system of those who are vaccinated.

In a nutshell, we can say that

  • The third wave is likely to hit India and it is not inevitable. It can be avoided or delayed following some basic protocols.
  • Taking all precautionary measures like washing hands, social distancing and wearing a mask.
  • Proper diet to boost the immunity.
  • Taking 2 doses of vaccination.
  • Getting self-isolated as soon as the symptoms appear.

If people will remain cautious and wise enough to follow the guidelines, it is possible that the graph of surge in covid cases during the third wave will not be as horrifying as in the second wave.