Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a video message on Friday addressed the nation and asked Indians under lockdown to switch off all lights at 9 pm on Sunday (April 5) and light candles, diyas or use torchlights or mobile flash for 9 minutes to mark the national fight against the novel Coronavirus.
Take a look at some of the key points from PM Modi’s video address:
- He urged all Indians to switch off the lights in their house, go to their windows or balcony, and light candles and diyas or use torch or mobile flash for 9 minutes on Sunday (April 5) with an aim to fight off the darkness created by coronavirus with light
- He urged everyone to complete this task from their respective balconies or windows and not gather on roads or their colonies.
- He also hailed the unprecedented service and discipline of Indians as the nationwide lockdown completes 9 days today.
- He said social distancing should be followed strictly and not broken at any cost. “ Do not cross the Lakshman Rekha of social distancing,” PM Modi said in the video address. He also said social distancing is the panacea for breaking the chain of the novel coronavirus.
- He also said that the way Indians thanked those on the forefront of the battle against COVID-19 on March 22 was appreciated all over the world and countries are now adopting the same concept.
While there were many who lauded the Prime Minister’s efforts towards fighting the coronavirus pandemic, some from the political spectrum took to twitter and criticised him for inaction.
Senior Congress leader P Chidambaram said he expected PM Modi to announce relief measures for the poor, who are affected by the lockdown, and talk about steps to tackle India’s economic woes.
We will listen to you and light diyas on April 5. But, in return, please listen to us and to the wise counsel of epidemiologists and economists.
— P. Chidambaram (@PChidambaram_IN) April 3, 2020
“We will listen to you and light diyas on April 5,” the former Union Minister wrote in a Twitter thread. “But in return, please listen to us and to the wise counsel of epidemiologists and economists.”
Chidambaram’s son Karti, who is a Congress MP, mocked the PM and said , “Will sticking pins into a voodoo doll in the shape of (the coronavirus) help?”
Will sticking pins into a Voodoo Doll in the shape of #Corinnavirus help?
— Karti P Chidambaram (@KartiPC) April 3, 2020
“Turn out lights and come on balconies? GET REAL MR. MODI!” said Mahua Moitra, a Trinamool Congress MP.
“Ensure immediate wages to construction and other labour during lockdown — laws exist permitting this. Stop gagging real press in name of curbing fake news,” she tweeted.
Turn out lights & come on balconies?
GET REAL MR. MODI!
Give India fiscal pkg worth 8-10pc of GDP
Ensure immediate wages to construction & other labour during lockdown- laws exist permitting this
Stop gagging real press in name of curbing fake news
— Mahua Moitra (@MahuaMoitra) April 3, 2020
The Prime Minister had earlier addressed the nation on March 23 and had announced the nationwide lockdown. The lockdown began at midnight on March 24 and is scheduled to on April 14, a total of 21 days.