While extending the lockdown till May 3, Modi listed seven important measures to be followed by citizens during this period.
Shoby Krishna G
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has extended the lockdown till May 3 and reiterated the importance of social distancing in the fight against Covid-19. In an address to the nation on April 14, 2020, he also stressed the importance of having a good immunity for effective containment of the virus.
BBMP Chief Health Officer B K Vijendra said: “It is essential to maintain a physical distance of six feet, especially with respect to senior citizens. It will help in the prevention of virus transmission. The lockdown extension till May 3 will help in cutting off the transmission chain from infected people.”
On April 10, the Ministry of AYUSH issued an advisory regarding immunity-boosting measures to be taken for self-care.
Acknowledging the difficulties faced by the people, the Prime Minister paid his respects to their sacrifices. Apart from practicing social distancing and developing immunity, he mentioned five other principles. He urged people to take care of senior citizens, especially those with medical conditions.
Anisha, a team member of the pan-Indian NGO Goonj, said: “Our organization does not focus on a specific section of people. We are getting requests from all sections like transgenders, sex workers, daily wage labourers, migrant workers and senior citizens. We are trying to provide dry rations to people. If there are community kitchen facilities in a particular area, we are tying up with them to provide dry rations to make food that will be distributed. If we are not able to reach these people, we will provide monetary support so that they can buy rations.”
Modi urged people to download the Aarogya Setu app, which has been designed to track Covid-19 infected people nearby using Bluetooth and location data. The application is available in 10 Indian languages apart from English.
News reports say the app has received widespread acknowledgment. The World Bank has taken note of its ability to track Covid-19 patients.
In two significant points, the Prime Minister stressed upon the duty of citizens to take care of the poor, and of company owners to look after their employees.
Subburaj P, owner of Malgudi Mithai, a sweet shop franchise in Tamil Nadu, said: “There are around 60 employees in the company, including migrants from Bihar. Many haven’t returned after Holi. We have not downsized staff. We have been giving them full salaries and rations ever since the lockdown began.” He spoke about a plan to resume work in the 6 am-to-noon window.
In the last of the seven principles, Modi appealed to the people to respect Covid-19 warriors, including police.
Ramakrishnan, deputy SP of Sattur, Tamil Nadu, said: “If they had not extended the lockdown, the curfew which has been in force so far would have become totally useless. Compared to other developing countries, we have fewer resources to handle a community spread of Covid-19. Hence, self-isolation is the best way for the entire nation.”
Asked if there were incidents of violence against police personnel, he said there were none in his jurisdiction.