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Taslima Nasreen, the Bangladeshi-Swedish writer of acclaim beyond borders, said on Sunday that she contracted the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) despite remaining indoors for over a year. Sharing details of her “mishap”, the activist said that during her time at home, her only companion was an indoor cat and she did not let anyone enter her home. Yet, much to her surprise, Nasrin managed to contract Covid-19. “Wish I knew how I caught it,” the writer said, lamenting her fate.
The author, who has fought several shades of religious fundamentalism and oppression during her lifetime, said that she was vexed by this new viral threat. In a detailed Facebook post in Bengali, the writer narrated, “Misfortune had always found its way with me. I have been at home alone, with only a cat as my companion, since March last year. Never went out, never let anyone enter my home either. Did all the cooking and cleaning myself as well. Did it come of any use? Not at all. The virus still found me.” She added, “Yes, I only went out for one hour, that too over two months ago, to take the first shot of the Covid-19 vaccine, which perhaps saved my life this time.”
“Misfortune had always found its way with me. If I start listing everything that has happened with me, all those things which weren’t supposed to, then the list would be so long no one would find an end to it! For now, let Covid-19 be the only tragedy,” the writer said.
“However”, Taslima Nasreen continued, “To call it a tragedy is probably not accurate, because I’m on my way to recovery. Instead, I’m thinking about the thousands of people who couldn’t recover! The people who passed away for lack of life-saving oxygen! Let all our sadness and tragedy be reserved for them.”
Although originally hailing from Bangladesh, Taslima Nasreen currently resides in Delhi after facing religious extremism in her native country. But the writer continues to express concerns about the aggravating Covid-19 pandemic situation in Bangladesh. On Saturday, she tweeted photos of Bangladeshis thronging the streets despite the ongoing Covid-19 related advisories in places and asked how can shopping for Eid and going home for family get-togethers be more important than saving lives from the deadly virus.”
However, despite the adverse situation, Nasreen noted that at least there’s no “stigma” any longer over contracting Covid-19. “Earlier, people used to hide the fact that they had contracted Covid, because there was a certain stigma attached to it like for AIDS, perhaps. Society would ostracise them. Since scores of people have been down with Covid-19 this past year, that stigma no longer exists!” she said.