Journalist Ashok Nilakantan launches second edition of book on COVID-19
Chennai, December 23, 2022
Ashok Nilakantan, a former Editor with news agency Press Trust of India, launched the second edition of his 400-page book, "No Time to Hide: COVID-19" here earlier this week.
The book was launched by Tamil Nadu Principal Secretary J Radhakrishnan, who handed over the first copy to former Chief Election Commissioner T S Krishnamurthy.
The book, containing research articles from prestigious publications globally and within India with FAQs on the pandemic, aggregated by the author, who is also known as T N Ashok, has been published by Notion Press of Chennai.
Dr. Radhakrishnan was in the forefront last year as the Health Secretary of Tamil Nadu who faced innumerable challenges in the containment and spread of the disease in the southern state.
The book chronicles the history of SARS COV-2 virus from its outbreak in Hubei province of China, how it became an endemic and quickly travelled across the globe as a pandemic as declared by the WHO in January 2020.
The book also highlights the measures taken by the Indian government to fight the scourge, the development of COVID-19 vaccines and the massive vaccination campaign in the country.
The book also focuses on how different countries met the challenge through lockdowns, shutdowns of businesses and rollout of vaccines. It also covers how China launched Zero Tolerance for COVID after the second wave and sub-variants such as the Omicron BA, BA3 (that caused maximum hospitalizations, and the launch of the first booster and the second booster shots by Pfizer.
Dr Radhakrishnan appreciated the research and diligence of the author in compiling massive and voluminous data and statistics on the disease and detailed case studies on how the worst-affected countries such as USA, India, China, Brazil, Spain, Italy, France had come to grips with the problem. The disease now ranks the second after the Spanish Flu that broke out in 1928-30 during the depression and claimed 5 million lives and infected 50 million people.
Covid 19 has between 2019 to 2022 claimed 5 million lives and affected 50 million people in the world, out of which more than 80 to 90 % of the population have recovered due to vaccines.
Says Ashok Nilakantan, "I have tried to make available all available information on the SARS COV-2 virus, its outbreak in Hubei in China and how that countryacted swiftly in containing the disease through the strictest of protocols later followed by India and other nations. Some of the worst-affected countries such as USA, UK, France, Spain, Italy, Russia and China had their health care systems virtually crippled. Case studies of these countries are detailed in the book.
At the last count as on June 2022, COVID 19 and its various variants such as Delta and Omicron BA04 and BA05 had infected nearly 4.50 million people leaving 4 lakh dead in India.