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Opinion: The unsung heroes in COVID-19 crisis

By Ajaz Ahmad

Under the grip of COVID-19, almost all the countries in the world are reporting cases of doctors, nurses, and other health care professionals on the frontline of the battle being infected themselves. Thus people associated with this profession are doing a great job for the humanity at the expense of their own lives which the whole world can never forget.

The encouraging thing is that the role of these health care professionals is widely appreciated and acknowledged throughout the globe including in this part of world too.


But along with these health professionals, there are other unsung heroes also who work in different capacities during this tough time. It would not be a bad idea if the role of these warriors is also acknowledged as they deserve it and it is a moral obligation of the society to boost their morale.

The department of Revenue, Relief and Rehabilitation is working at the forefront to contain the spread of COVID-19 in coordination with all other aligned departments.

The village committees comprising of lambardars, chowkidars, patwari, and girdawars along with health officials and ASHA workers are doing praiseworthy job of identifying the persons with travel history, so the target testing has remained successful in limited capacity of testing for COVID-19 at designated pathological laboratories.

The tracking and tracing of contact details is possible only with the active effort of ground level workers especially lamberdar, ASHA workers, local panchayat, and patwari concerned.

The tehsildars and naib tehsildars are identifying the red and buffer zones in the most professional way after any declared positive case of COVID-19 in a particular area, subsequently sealing the area.

The lockdown has been implemented by all tehsildars in their respective tehsils along with police in letter and spirit, a fact acknowledged by Ministry of Home Affairs. The availability of essential commodities and price check especially of food items and rest of the articles have been ensured by all tehsildars in their respective areas.

The control rooms working 24×7 have been established in all tehsils with every SOS call responded in shortest possible time. Buildings for quarantine facilities were identified, and all the basic facilities were made available to the inmates by the tehsildars with coordination from all aligned departments. All the tehsildars also perform the magisterial duties at the same time regarding different preventive and criminal issues.

The officers of revenue department ensure that no fresh encroachment shall take place on kahcharai, state or migrant land. These revenue officers ensure that all migrant labourers get food and shelter. They also made their inventory which was necessary for testing of those who have recent travel history.

The tehsildars along their teams and basic level workers aware public about different issues related to COVID-19, its spread, significance of red zones, and DOs and DO NOTs.

The tehsildars along with their teams make religious leaders of respective areas aware about the necessity of social distancing and avoidance of religious and social gatherings, a step most vital to stop the viral COVID-19.

Every Tehsil administration ensures that social distancing is implemented at banks, medical shops, hospitals, pesticide shops and at other places.

The tehsil administration along with volunteers especially Indian Red Cross and local NGOs ensures proper contact tracing and shifting to isolation wards.

The revenue officers and officials work tirelessly to ease out the miseries of the people during these days.

Efforts of revenue functionaries, from top to bottom, is usually ignored which is not a good sign at all. Acknowledgment and appreciation play a great role to boost morale of those who are in ground but here in Kashmir we don’t realize importance of this.

Professionals and students who are outside their homes in other parts of the country or abroad are in touch with Tehsildars who convey their grievances to the higher ups for redressal.

The main workforce of administration especially on ground are Revenue offficers and Officials in Halqas, Circles Niyabats,Tehsil Offices, SDM Offices, DC Offices and Divisional Commissioner’s Offices.

The Tehsildars, Naib Tehsildars, Patwaries and other subordinate staff including drivers are all unsung heroes and foot soldiers of the system that we call the administration.

(Author is a Revenue Officer in Jammu and Kashmir)