Dengue and malnutrition are two curses that have overtaken West Bengal and Gujarat. While in Gujarat Modi blamed the dieting of the middle class for malnourishment, in Bengal it is Mamata who linked dengue to dieting. Both were probably mis-quoted, though at the same time what they said applied well in many cases.
VARIOUS STUDIES have found dismal malnutrition levels in Gujarat, particularly among tribal, rural and female populations. But Chief Minister Narendra Modi in a way, later to be followed by Mamata Banerjee in West Bengal, says that “malnourishment was caused by figure-conscious Gujarati gals dieting so hard, they didn't even notice they were malnourished”.
In an interview with The Wall Street Journal on August 28. Narendra Modi, Chief Minister of Gujarat, blamed the middle class for high level of malnutrition in the region saying that the middle class people paid more attention to beauty than to their health, reported The Times of India. Almost 360 degree opposite in her political and other views, the West Bengal CM Mamata’s advice to tackle dengue strangely reverberates the same words of Modi on malnourishment in Gujarat.
Mamata blames dieting for the growing dengue cases apparently taking cue from her Gujarat counterpart Narendra Modi. In the Writers Building she expressed concern on the rising number of people affected by dengue in the state and the ways to control it saying : “ In the name of dieting if you cut down on your food intake, if you have less oil here, and less spices there and eat less, you can easily get affected by dengue”. Nothing can be more ridiculous than this medical advice of Mamata whose state is now horribly hit by the vector borne disease.
The unofficial figures put the death toll from the disease at 20. Her Urban Development Minister Firhad Hakim outdid Mamata in his more absurd remark on dengue: “The government has nothing to do to stop spreading of dengue as the outbreak is controlled by the nature’s law”. Nothing can be more unnatural than this justification of the spread of dengue. Mamata Banerjee asked the youth to avoid dieting as that could bring down resistance levels and result in their falling prey to ailments like dengue.Modi in Gujarat has also told that Gujarat was mostly a vegetarian state and that created a challenge to fight the problem of malnourishment and stunted growth. Mamata too expressed her annoyance at dieting. This is the way how serious social problems are bypassed by the political leaders. But real problems cannot really be bypassed.
Here we may remember some interesting incidents of the past.India is suffering for centuries because of poverty. Morarji Desai as the Prime Minister believed that prohibition would solve the problems. Desai thought that if cows were not butchered, then all problems would have been solved. He also believes in the efficacy of drinking urine. There are many such false prophets and India suffers because of these false prophets and their ideas. Some spiritual leaders are like them. Some say that to get enlightened, one must stop eating onions. For that one should stop eating chillies or salt. Nobody knows anything for sure, but poses to be a doctor. This is the unkindest cut of all.