Devastating Effect of Coronavirus in Despotic Regimes: U.S., Brazil, Russia, and India

President of Russia Vladimir Putin. Photo: Kremlin
President of Russia Vladimir Putin. Photo: Kremlin

If the autocratic rulers in these four countries – U.S., Brazil, Russia, and India – are not tamed immediately, coronavirus will cause catastrophic damage in the entire world.

With 10 million reported coronavirus (Covid-19) cases in the world, nearly 50 percent of the infections are in four countries – U.S., Brazil, Russia, and India – which are at the top of the list of the most infected countries.

The commonality in these four countries is that all of them are being ruled by autocratic rulers who kept ignoring the Covid crisis and let hundreds of thousands of people die with the infection. Here is the brief account of their despotic decisions during the pandemic.

U.S. Ruled by Donald Trump: Trump kept ignoring the virus and said repeatedly that it will disappear miraculously. He also said that people who are infected with coronavirus can be injected with a poisonous disinfectant to treat them.

Since President Trump did not do anything to contain the virus and insisted on reducing the Covid testing, with nearly 2.5 million cases and 130,000 reported deaths, America has become the hotspot of infection. Now, Trump is forcing the states to reopen the economy so that he could hold his election rallies.

As a result of the reopening, at least 26 states recorded a sharp rise in Covid cases during the last week of June. Health experts predict that the Covid death toll in the U.S. will cross 200,000 by September.

Brazil Ruled by Jair Bolsonaro. It is largely believed that Bolsonaro is solely responsible for Covid deaths in Brazil because he lifted the lockdown restrictions despite repeated warnings from health experts against such a move.

Earlier, in May, a slew of global celebrities had warned that the coronavirus infection will cause genocide in Brazil if despotic President Bolsonaro kept ignoring the havoc that the virus is wreaking in the South American country.

Bolsonaro has been ignoring the devastation being caused by coronavirus while dead bodies pile up in the city of Manaus, northern Brazil. According to reports, the local health system has collapsed and gravediggers are burying the dead in mass graves known as “trenches.” Reuters said in its report: “Soon, the city may run out of coffins.”

Russia Ruled by Vladimir Putin: Despite the increasing number of Covid cases and deaths in Russia, President Putin is just focusing on his political dominance. He is downplaying the effect of coronavirus to strengthen his position in Russia’s political landscape.

He has ordered to hold a national vote on approving the amendments to the Constitution of the Russian Federation on July 1, 2020. The 14 articles that are expected to be changed in the Constitution will virtually allow Putin to rule Russia like a monarch.

The attempt is to nullify the number of presidential terms served by Putin to allow him to serve his first term if elected to the presidency in 2024.

India Ruled by Narendra Modi: While imposing a lockdown in a dictatorial manner on March 24, Prime Minister Modi declared that he will stop the virus in just 21 days. Since Modi is not trained to handle any area of governance that needs intellectual competence, coronavirus kept spreading in every corner of India.

Instead of providing the test and treatment facilities in hospitals and personal protective equipment (PPE) to doctors, Modi asked Indians to hit their kitchen utensils to encourage the doctors who should keep working in high-risk hospitals to handle the coronavirus patients.

Although the Modi government is hiding the actual data on Covid cases and deaths, health experts estimate that nearly 300 million Indians will soon be infected and millions are expected to die, as the infection will reach its peak in the July-September period.

While the Modi government is ignoring the health concerns of Indians, Modi has created a personal PM CARES Fund to receive donations to deal with coronavirus. But there is hardly any transparency in the management of this fund.

If the autocratic rulers in these four countries – U.S., Brazil, Russia, and India – are not tamed immediately, coronavirus will cause catastrophic damage in the entire world.

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Rakesh Raman