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Dear 2020,

It’s only mid-year and so many of us are wishing that you were already coming to an end. Who is to blame for daring to make such a (calendrically) unreasonable wish? The world is enveloped in a pandemic that has thrown every grail of the word ‘normalcy’ out of gravitational ambits. COVID-19 has brought about a new world order wherein an altered sense of existence and quarantined functioning is the new normal. A sense of panic, anxiety and dystopia invades us homo sapiens, and as we get stronger in adjusting to these contingencies, we brace ourselves to endure this for longer than our earlier naiveties had expected.

Before we became fully aware of what the Coronavirus had in store for us, anti-CAA and NRC protests had already splintered into communal riots in several parts of our country. Soon after India entered its quarantine months that threw the lives of uncountable migrant labourers into jeopardy, there was the Vishakhapatnam gas leak, mild earthquakes that shook our tectonic plates, and last, but by no means the least, cyclone Amphan, that has devastated our fellow countrymen in Odisha, West Bengal and the adjoining coastal belts.

So pardon us 2020, for wanting to fast forward the remaining half of you, despite knowing of its impossibility. That said, despite our frantic muddles through the various curveballs that you are unleashing at us, we are coping in the only way that we have inherited from our ancestors- through the act of adapting. Yes, we will be caught in frenzies and panics at the beginning, but we will be held together by our stronger segments and we will, as a race, adapt. Our health experts will work hard to curb the virus from spreading any further. Our relief teams will bandage the wounds that you inflict. We will brace these storms. Sure, we will lose much of what we can’t recover. Many of us will perish. But know this, 2020, that the rest of us who survived, would have adapted and become stronger to face you on behalf of those of us who are to come, as well as those of us who we lost along the way.

We might complain, criticise and even attempt to escape our present destinies, but we will still fight, and we will survive. We brace for the new normal that you have unveiled to us. We will retain optimism, not as a choice, but as the only choice that we have. Our savings dwindle, we are caged, but on the bright side, our environment begins to heal. Sooner or later, we too will re-emerge with altered ideas of what it means to live a good life. With a renewed sense of gratitude and a renewed sense of purpose, to re-examine why we all are here, and what we can do to make it truly count, not just for ourselves, but more importantly, for each other.

In the end, when you draw to a close 2020, we will be here, humbler than we were on the previous New Years’ Eve, fatigued, yes, but with all the gratitude that we had been taking for granted for far too long. And lest we even say, we aren’t glad at how you unfurled, 2020, but we are relieved for having known better than you thought

we would.

Veer Bhogya Vasundhara (the brave shall reap the earth).


Urvashi Singh


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Lakshmi Raja: The divine embodiment of Goddess Lakshmi and a vibrant reflection of Durga.