SOUTH ASIA COVID-19’s Worrying New Surge: How journalists can stay safe in the face of variants

May 26, 2021
5:00 pm +06 - 6:00 pm +06


TIMES: 4:30PM (New Delhi); 4:45PM (Kathmandu) and 5:00PM (Dhaka)

The deadly new surge in South Asia threatens to reverse global gains against the COVID-19 pandemic. There is growing evidence from health authorities that more virulent COVID-19 variants are fueling this surge in South Asia. According to the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), impacts of this deadly new surge in COVID-19 cases across South Asia are unlike anything the region has seen before. UNICEF also warns of a “real possibility” that health systems will be strained to a breaking point, leading to even more loss of life.

What is unfolding in South Asia also serves as a stark warning to the rest of the world that this pandemic has not gone away. This no time for complacency. South Asia’s tragedy is the world’s tragedy and it cannot go ignored. South Asian journalists play a vital role in keeping that story alive. In covering this very worrying COVID surge, many journalists have themselves fallen victim to the disease that has become more transmissible due to the emergence of new variants. For many journalists in the region, it is a daily toss-up between their personal safety considerations and their professional obligation to inform the public. The journalism profession entails doing in-person interviews and interviewing medical personnel in overcrowded emergency rooms where viral transmission is high.

WHEN? Wednesday 26 May 2021 at 4:30PM (New Delhi); 4:45PM (Kathmandu) and 5:00PM (Dhaka)


  • Ranjit Devraj: Consultant based in New Delhi, India
  • Dilrukshi Handunnetti: Executive Director at Center for Investigative Reporting, Colombo, Sri Lanka
  • Surendra Phuyal: Freelance journalist, Kathmandu, Nepal
  • Shameem Sheuli: Program Manager Internews, Dhaka, Bangladesh

This webinar will be moderated by Internews’ Pandemic Media Mentors Dr. Jaya Shreedhar and Sonny Krishnan

We invite you to join us for this free event for journalists in South Asia