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Feluda provides a ray of hope in coronavirus vaccine

Enlisting the nominal aid of fictional sleuths to solve coronavirus mysteries.

ET Bureau|
Last Updated: May 15, 2020, 08.15 AM IST
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Projects engaged in the hunt for a remedy for Covid-19 might call themselves by names borrowed from detective fiction heroes.
Satyajit Ray would have endorsed a promisingly path-breaking Covid-19 test kit, which has been given the acronymic name of Feluda.

Devised by two scientists of a New Delhi research institute, the test, which could provide a reliable result within an hour, honours the fictional Calcutta-based sleuth created by the cineaste.

Fast and accurate testing for the pathogen is a crucial factor in tracking down and halting the spread of the deadly virus, and it’s appropriate that the investigative skills of a diagnostic Feluda — short for FNCAS9 Editor-Limited Uniform Detection Assay — be recruited to help solve the lethal mysteries of the pandemic.

Similarly, other projects engaged in the hunt for a remedy for Covid-19 might call themselves by names borrowed from detective fiction heroes.

A possible candidate for such nominal enlisting might be another India-based sleuth, HRF Keating’s Inspector Ganesh V Ghote of the Bombay Police Force who has been the protagonist of over 20 books and several films.

Apart from imparting an impetus to the efforts to crack the Covid-19 case, the thought that hawk-eyed Holmesian stand-ins are surveilling preventive transgressions like going maskless in public or not maintaining social distancing might deter such trespasses.

As Feluda might say, ‘Koro na!’ which translates as a prohibitory ‘Don’t do it!’

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