The Sunday Feed

Life after Life!

There is a very beautiful song by Passenger called “Let Her Go.” It is one of those rare songs where the songwriter decided to pack it with a lot of insights. And the one that strikes you most apart from the title is, “You only miss the sun when it starts to snow.”

Times have changed so much in the recent 2 years that most people on this planet are in the state of shock and awe. There are more rumours floating in the air than you find fish in the sea. All because the species which always acclaimed to be the smartest is now in a complete state of flux! Never have I seen such a plight of disarray of this magnitude. It’s not that there is a shortage of intelligent people but time is moving way ahead of everyone.

It is believed that in the US alone so far more than 560,000 people have departed fighting the virus. The world figures stand at more than 3 million. And it’s not over yet. With the way the politicians are shamelessly fighting for their own seats in India while blatantly ignoring the virus, it seems, India is headed towards quickly acquiring the number one spot in the most affected nations.

I was reading an article that said that for every person who loses the battle with the virus, there are in fact 9 casualties. Apart from the emotion wreckage, the financial damage is devastating. We all know that when an earning member of the family suddenly disappears, the biggest challenge is for those who are left behind. No matter what you do, there is always a fixed cost attached to just staying alive everyday. And because a lot of times there is one member paying for everyone, no one realises it until they are gone and when the bills come rushing in.

The Babylonians developed a system recorded in the famous Code of Hammurabi 1750 BC and practiced by early Mediterranean sailing merchants. If a merchant received a loan to fund his shipment, he would pay the lender an additional sum in exchange for the lender’s guarantee to cancel the loan should the shipment be stolen or lost at sea. This is how insurance came into being. We have come a long way and today, there is insurance for everything. However, the problem is that we have never given it the due respect it deserves as we always thought fate would never be unkind to us.

Life, health, motor, travel and property are the 5 major types of insurance that are most preferred by people all across the world. However, what needs to be understood is the fact that most countries have a very low figure when it comes to the number of people applying for insurance. If we talk about the US, there are about 50% of people who have a life insurance whereas when we talk about a country like India, only 25% of the people have a life Insurance. What’s even worse is the fact that it covers just about 10% of the financial requirement.

It is very easy for me to sit at home and say that everyone should be insured but in reality, like everything else, even insurance comes with a price tag. You need to earn enough to pay the premiums. This goes to show how unfair this world can be. Even a thing like Insurance becomes a luxury that only the rich can afford. Well not exactly because some organisations like the Railways do try to compensate for the loss of an employee by providing a job to the sibling. But there is no rule that says that a business or a private company needs to get insurance for their employees. Why, I do not know. Well, the small companies can be given a tax rebate to offset the costs while the large ones can be asked to take care of their employees. There has to be some respect for the family of the person who is dedicating everything to the business so that it can grow 24/7.

To all the corporates, I would like to say that all this hypocrisy of writing big Vision and Mission statements in your website and your annual report is a complete farce when you fail to ensure that if something happens to your employees, you will take care of their families. This pandemic is not just about the pain it will cause through the fatalities. It is about the people that the deceased will leave behind to die a hundred deaths everyday. Well money can’t buy you love but it can definitely buy you a lot of essentials. And in this new world, it is essential to stay alive before you enjoy the more soulful gratifications like love and romance. So get ensured before you get engaged! Because here, we are talking about life after life!

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