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‘The pandemic has triggered gender-regressive outcomes’ – 20 quotes from India’s COVID-19 journey

Launched in 2014, StoryBites is a weekly feature from YourStory, featuring notable quotable quotes in our articles of this past week (see the previous edition here). This special series of compilations focus on India’s COVID-19 struggle. Share these quotes and excerpts with your networks, and check back to the original articles for more insights.

See also our pick of Top Quotes of 2022 on Entrepreneurship, Motivation, Investments, Women Changemakers, Social Entrepreneurs, Environmental Change, Pandemic Resilience, Digital Transformation, India Opportunities, Design, Art, Failure Lessons, and Storytelling.

While COVID-19 is currently under control, one must consider the possibility of a new variant or the cases rising again. If this happens, the health capital will get tested at the individual as well as social levels. – Sameer Merchant, Illusion Dental Labs

The WHO award recognised the significant impact of ASHAs in ensuring the delivery of primary health services, including, but not limited to maternal and child health care, family planning, nutrition, immunisation and community mobilisation for mitigation of COVID-19. – Sanghamitra Singh, Population Foundation of India

The Principal Scientific Adviser Office had a proximal view through the journey of CCAMP-InDx 1.0 and its eventual success towards enabling mass-scale accessibility and affordability for COVID-19 diagnostics. – Ajay Sood, Principal Scientific Adviser

To build a culture of reading and to make up for pandemic-time learning loss, the National Book Trust, Children’s Book Trust, and other sources will be encouraged to provide and replenish non-curricular titles in regional languages and English to these physical libraries. – Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman

As schooling went online for a considerable period even post-pandemic, the increase in internet subscriptions in rural areas helped mitigate learning loss significantly. – Economic Survey, 2022-23

It is said that change is the only constant, and, in the post-COVID-19 world, change has also been the only option. Every industry adapted to the rapid transformation necessitated by the pandemic, and many business processes were rendered almost unrecognisable, almost overnight. – Prerna Kalra, Daalchini Technologies

Over the last few years, Digital Native brands (DNBs) have risen to prominence, fueled by the growth of ecommerce and catalysed by the COVID-19 pandemic. – Mohit Rana, Redseer Strategy Consultants


Top 7 stories of startups turning around their fortunes

The lockdowns following the COVID-19 outbreak led several individuals to hone their skills while at home. Several home chefs not only gave time to their craft but also became small business owners in their own right. – Prerna Kalra, Daalchini Technologies

After the pandemic shock, the MSME credit guarantee scheme was one of the most important instruments that helped the MSMEs across the country regain their feet. – Ravi Saxena, Wonderchef

We actually did fairly well through COVID-19 in India. And I’m even more bullish now on the other side of it. – Tim Cook, Apple

COVID-19 has also been the trigger point for us to launch BetterCommerce in India. Our initial plan was to bring it to around 2024-25. – Vikram Saxena, BetterCommerce

We hired a sales team post-pandemic. The brand got a really good push in the market and its availability and visibility improved. – Sachin Chadha, Milap


From a graduate selling chai to an 80-year-old couple starting business, the top 10 SMB stories of 2022

Too much of indoor time also started affecting us since physical and social contact was truly missed. We were just longing to meet one another and feel the artistic vibes again. – Shyamala Ramanand, India Art Festival

But with online shows, you are never amidst the art! It’s great to be back in physical events. The joy of being surrounded by colours and artwork is something only an artist understands and feels! – Sunitha Krishna, India Art Festival

During the lockdown, a karigar known to me approached me for some work, and Aakriti hit upon the idea to research further into intricate hand embroidery. – Poonam Rawal, Chikankari

The pandemic was a good time to explore more mediums, styles and subjects beyond the usual preferred ones. I perfected time to diversify and specialise. – Beena Surana, India Art Festival

The pandemic gave me more time to paint, reflect on my style, and teach myself new techniques which I now incorporate into my work. – Prinkle Mehta, India Art Festival


Top 15 startup stories of 2022

As the world gears up for the next normal, we must be cognisant of the far-reaching impact this pandemic has had on the women workforce and strive to regain the lost ground. – Munira Loliwala, TeamLease Digital

Many women IT professionals quit within the first five years citing flexibility, pre-existing gender related inequalities (exacerbated by the pandemic) and lack of growth opportunities as glaring factors. – Mukesh Gandhi, Creative Synergies Group

The pandemic has triggered gender-regressive outcomes where the global women’s participation in the workforce is expected to drop by 13 million even while male employment recovers to 2019 numbers. – Munira Loliwala, TeamLease Digital

YourStory has also published the pocketbook ‘Proverbs and Quotes for Entrepreneurs: A World of Inspiration for Startups’ as a creative and motivational guide for innovators (downloadable as apps here: Apple, Android).

Edited by Suman Singh

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