Compared to many other states of India, Meghalaya has put up a stronger fight in terms of containing the spread of novel coronavirus.
So what were the factors that fortified the fight?
Overall there was a strict adherence to COVID prevention norms.
While appreciating the people for their cooperation and discipline, health minister of the state A.L. Hek said, "The people have abided strictly by the rules and regulations that were laid down by the government. The traditional institutions of the state have also had a role in influencing this mass discipline."
Many people in the state believe that the tribal customs and practices have made the state stronger and mightier.Talking about the role of traditional institutions, Hek said, "Traditional institutions have served as a bridge between the government and the people in terms of enforcing the government directives on COVID 19."
Incidentally, many people in the state believe that the tribal customs and practices have made the state stronger and mightier. They also believe that this has indirectly fortified their fight against the virus.
Congress spokesperson and MLA from Garo Hills, Zenith Sangma, said, "In Garo we have a term 'Songrakia,' which means that whenever there is an outbreak of epidemic diseases, people cordon the village and do not allow outsiders to enter it. This is actually a culture and practice of the Garo community."
Meghalaya has a multi-layer structure of governance. The state government looks after the overall affairs of the state, which is under the sixth schedule of the Constitution. There are autonomous district councils that have its own elected members. Traditional institutions and tribal headmen on the other hand are very active at the grass-root level and they are playing a key role in the state's fight against the virus.
Presently, the state has detected a little over 8,855 COVID-19 out of which 1,574 are active cases, 7,228 have recovered and 80 have died.