New Delhi: With the second Covid-19 wave raging across India, frontline medical workers have come under immense pressure as the health infrastructure has been overwhelmed by the surge in cases.
Doctors were even attacked at the Apollo hospital in Delhi by relatives of a 67-year-old woman, who died in the emergency ward after the hospital ran short of ICU beds.
Amid these trying times, Neoma Gupta, a 40-year-old lawyer in Delhi has made a short video saluting the medical fraternity working round the clock on the frontline.
With the popular song ‘Hum honge kamyab ek din’ playing in the background in a male singer’s voice, the short video offers gratitude to the hundreds of doctors, nurses and others who don the PPE suits every day to fight the deadly virus and keep others safe.
“We all are responsible for these cases one way or the other but these medical workers are our heroes who have risked so much for us every day since the beginning of the pandemic,” Neoma told ThePrint.
“This is just me doing my bit to make people understand and remind how much they have been doing for us,” she added.
Neoma shared a recent account of her brother, a urologist in the United Kingdom, being told by his colleagues that “India is a rotten country”.
She finds such comments unacceptable. “We all know how India was capable of handling these things, but the government failed to take charge at the right time.”
Neoma has been spreading awareness about Covid-19 since the onset of the pandemic in 2020. She made a video for a Mask India campaign last year, and has helped feed more than 1,000 people across Delhi during the fresh Covid surge.
‘Old is Bold’
Neoma, who graduated from the University of Leeds in England in 2003, was trained by renowned senior lawyers such as former Union minister Arun Jaitley, and her father Kailash Vasdev, and has been specialising as a criminal lawyer for the past six years.
She decided to launch an old age home under her initiative, ‘Old is Bold’, during the first lockdown last year after she received a call from six elderly persons asking for a job. Neoma said it devastated her to know that they had been abandoned by their families due to Covid-induced financial crisis at their homes.
“Someone I met at an election campaign in East Delhi called me late at night, saying he was abandoned by his family and that he desperately needed a job. He brought with him five other people. My husband and I rented a small room for them,” Neoma told ThePrint.
The room has since grown into an old age home in Dwarka where 23 such elderly people live. All of them are aged over 55 years, and the oldest one among them is an 82-year-old woman abandoned by her family. They are all looked after by three caretakers.
Neoma said her aim is to give the abandoned elderly people a platform to showcase their work and connect them directly to buyers. Some of these people give online cooking lessons while others have different skills such as making pickles, pots and other items.
“Under this initiative, our team has tried to provide senior abandoned citizens with a platform where they can use their skills to earn money and live with dignity,” Neoma said.
(Edited by Sanghamitra Mazumdar)