Pune: "Despite Pune having experience of successfully treating pandemic situations like swine flu, I noticed that there is failure of the administration to control the coronavirus outbreak. Handling the pandemic is the key responsibility of the administration which needs to be handled sensitively. If the administration decides and implements the right policies, the infection in Pune can be brought under control in a fortnight or say in 15 days span." said Mahesh Zagade, the former commissioner of Pune Municipal Corporation.
Zagade expressed his thoughts in an online talk on 'Corona Infection and the City of Pune' which was organised by the Rajiv Gandhi Memorial Committee. The talks were organised by committee member Gopal Tiwari where number of personalities took part.
Zagade said, "Pune has the experience of dealing with swine flu eleven years ago. It has also set an example for other cities. Then, how the administration failed to eradicate coronavirus this time. COVID is not a curative disease but a preventative one. If it had not been allowed to spread, people would not have had the problems of getting sick, running out of beds, running out of medicines."
While reporting on the health department of the municipality, Zagade said, "The Health Department is important. About 40 to 50 per cent of the health posts in the country's cities like Pune which is in the rank of 8th to 9th largest cities are vacant. The ineligible person had an additional charge of health for nine years. It is not advisable to get nine years when the post of health chief needs to be filled in three months and still the deputy health chief post is vacant."
Explaining the importance of public participation in the administration, Zagade said, "People's participation plays a major role and it's one of the most very important aspects in any work which I see as zero at present. Make good use of the NGOs, experts, doctors you have available. People need to understand what the problems are in administration. If the Municipal Commissioner decides on the right policies, it is not too late. With proper planning, the disease can be brought under control in a fortnight."