Could Indian Land Reformers’ Exemplary Pandemic Response Open The Way For Big Brother?

Tony Gosling tony at
Thu May 14 09:44:11 BST 2020

Could Indian Land Reformers’ Exemplary Pandemic 
Response Open The Way For Big Brother?

A model response. But, like New Zealand, does 
this not lock Kerala in to 
Gates’ ‘vaccine or bust’ 
Big Brother digital ID, over a virus only about as deadly as a bad flu?

coronavirus slayer! How Kerala’s rock star health 
minister helped save it from Covid-19

The Communist Party of India (Marxist), of which 
she is a member, has been prominent in Kerala’s 
governments since 1957, the year after her birth. 
(It was part of the Communist Party of 
until 1964, when it broke away.) Born into a 
family of activists and freedom fighters – her 
grandmother campaigned against untouchability – 
she watched the so-called “Kerala model” be 
assembled from the ground up; when we speak, this 
is what she wants to talk about.

The foundations of the model are land reform – 
enacted via legislation that capped how much land 
a family could own and increased land ownership 
among tenant farmers – a decentralised public 
health system and investment in public education. 
Every village has a primary health centre and 
there are hospitals at each level of its 
administration, as well as 10 medical colleges.

This is true of other states, too, says MP 
Cariappa, a public health expert based in Pune, 
Maharashtra state, but nowhere else are people so 
invested in their primary health system. Kerala 
highest life expectancy and 
lowest infant mortality of any state in India; it 
is also <>the 
most literate state. “With widespread access to 
education, there is a definite understanding of 
health being important to the wellbeing of people,” says Cariappa.

Shailaja says: “I heard about those struggles – 
the agricultural movement and the freedom fight – 
from my grandma. She was a very good 
storyteller.” Although emergency measures such as 
the lockdown are the preserve of the national 
government, each Indian state sets its own health 
policy. If the Kerala model had not been in 
place, she insists, her government’s response to 
Covid-19 would not have been possible.
test centre in ErnakulamKerala

A walk-in test centre in Ernakulam, Kerala. Photograph: Reuters

That said, the state’s primary health centres had 
started to show signs of age. When Shailaja’s 
party came to power in 2016, it undertook a 
modernisation programme. One pre-pandemic 
innovation was to create clinics and a registry 
for respiratory disease – a big problem in India. 
“That meant we could spot conversion to Covid-19 
and look out for community transmission,” 
Shailaja says. “It helped us very much.”

When the outbreak started, each district was 
asked to dedicate two hospitals to Covid-19, 
while each medical college set aside 500 beds. 
Separate entrances and exits were designated. 
Diagnostic tests were in short supply, especially 
after the disease reached wealthier western 
countries, so they were reserved for patients 
with symptoms and their close contacts, as well 
as for random sampling of asymptomatic people and 
those in the most exposed groups: health workers, police and volunteers.

Shailaja says a test in Kerala produces a result 
within 48 hours. “In the Gulf, as in the US and 
UK – all technologically fit countries – they are 
having to wait seven days,” she says. “What is 
happening there?” She doesn’t want to judge, she 
says, but she has been mystified by the large 
death tolls in those countries: “I think testing 
is very important – also quarantining and 
hospital surveillance – and people in those 
countries are not getting that.” She knows, 
because Malayalis living in those countries have phoned her to say so.

Places of worship were closed under the rules of 
in protests in 
Indian states, but resistance has been noticeably 
absent in Kerala – in part, perhaps, because its 
chief minister, Pinarayi Vijayan, consulted with 
local faith leaders about the closures. Shailaja 
says Kerala’s high literacy level is another 
factor: “People understand why they must stay at 
home. You can explain it to them.”

Snapshots of a world in lockdown: ‘The crisis has crossed a new threshold’

The Indian government plans to lift the lockdown 
on 17 May (the date has been extended twice). 
After that, she predicts, there will be a huge 
influx of Malayalis to Kerala from the heavily 
infected Gulf region. “It will be a great 
challenge, but we are preparing for it,” she 
says. There are plans A, B and C, with plan C – 
the worst-case scenario – involving the 
requisitioning of hotels, hostels and conference 
centres to provide 165,000 beds. If they need 
more than 5,000 ventilators, they will struggle – 
although more are on order – but the real 
limiting factor will be manpower, especially when 
it comes to contact tracing. “We are training up 
schoolteachers,” Shailaja says.

Once the second wave has passed – if, indeed, 
there is a second wave – these teachers will 
return to schools. She hopes to do the same, 
eventually, because her ministerial term will 
finish with the state elections a year from now. 
Since she does not think the threat of Covid-19 
will subside any time soon, what secret would she 
like to pass on to her successor? She laughs her 
infectious laugh, because the secret is no secret: “Proper planning.”

NB please do reply with remove as the subject or 
first line if you do not wish to recieve further emails - thanks

"And I think, in the end, that is the best 
definition of journalism I have heard; to 
challenge authority - all authority - especially 
so when governments and politicians take us to 
war, when they have decided that they will kill and others will die. "
--Robert Fisk

'From South America, where payment must be made 
with subtlety, the Bormann organization has made 
a substantial contribution. It has drawn many of 
the brightest Jewish businessmen into a 
participatory role in the development of many of 
its corporations, and many of these Jews share 
their prosperity most generously with Israel. If 
their proposals are sound, they are even provided 
with a specially dispensed venture capital fund. 
I spoke with one Jewish businessmen in Hartford, 
Connecticut. He had arrived there quite unknown 
several years before our conversation, but with 
Bormann money as his leverage. Today he is more 
than a millionaire, a quiet leader in the 
community with a certain share of his profits 
earmarked as always for his venture capital 
benefactors. This has taken place in many other 
instances across America and demonstrates how 
Bormann’s people operate in the contemporary 
commercial world, in contrast to the fanciful 
nonsense with which Nazis are described in so much “literature.”

So much emphasis is placed on select Jewish 
participation in Bormann companies that when 
Adolf Eichmann was seized and taken to Tel Aviv 
to stand trial, it produced a shock wave in the 
Jewish and German communities of Buenos Aires. 
Jewish leaders informed the Israeli authorities 
in no uncertain terms that this must never happen 
again because a repetition would permanently 
rupture relations with the Germans of Latin 
America, as well as with the Bormann 
organization, and cut off the flow of Jewish 
money to Israel. It never happened again, and the 
pursuit of Bormann quieted down at the request of 
these Jewish leaders. He is residing in an 
Argentinian safe haven, protected by the most 
efficient German infrastructure in history as 
well as by all those whose prosperity depends on his well-being.'

You can donate to support Tony's work here

TG mobile +44 7786 952037  
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <>

More information about the Diggers350 mailing list