Bhubaneswar(Special Opinion)India’s streets witnessed an eerie quiet today from the morning, as millions of people across the country stayed indoors, & bare minimum number of vehicles plied on the road following Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s appeal for ‘Janata curfew’ to help check the spread of corona virus.As the 14-hour Janata curfew got underway at 7 am, people kept themselves indoors as part of the social distancing exercise. All markets and establishments except those dealing in essential goods and services are closed for the day. The curfew will end at 9 pm.In the State twin city Bhubaneswar-Cuttack, Baleswar, Sambalpur, Berhampur, Padmapur, Rayagada and in the Andhra Pradesh Visakhapatnam, Vijayawada etc town roads were deserted with very few bikes and cycles plying. Vendors were off the roads in the morning hours. Berhampur & Chatrapur also observed the restrictions voluntarily. Passenger trains are cancelled and put on hold from Saturday night and the restriction will continue till night 10 pm on today,but other Express trains are running with reduced to minimum as well. Passenger Bus Association had earlier announced that they will obey the restriction for the Janata curfew. So that today all Buses are cancelled for the passengers. An unprecedented shutdown commenced across the country today morning on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s appeal for a ‘Janata curfew’ to help check the spread of corona virus.As the ‘Janata curfew’ got underway at 7 am, people largely kept themselves indoor as part of the social distancing exercise to stop the spread of the virus and bare number of public transport vehicles plied on nearly empty roads. All markets and establishments except those dealing in essential goods and services are closed for this day. Ahead of the start of the curfew, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said, “In a few minutes from now, the #Janta Curfew’ commences. Let us all be a part of this curfew, which will add tremendous strength to the fight against COVID-19 menace”.He said the steps to be taken now will help in the times to come.“Stay indoors and stay healthy,” he appealed again. In New Delhi as per our reporters, the roads were deserted with barely some private vehicles & buses plying. Like Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Bihar,our State Odisha & Andhra Pradesh have announced complete lockdown till the month end.Regular prayers with large gatherings in shrines of various faiths, including Sunday mass organisations and institutions in every sphere have been suspended for the restrictions. As result of this the roads in the city were found empty as the State ramped up social-distancing measures as India is observing a total shutdown of 14 hours (from 7am to 9 pm) under a ‘Janata Curfew’. Several Indian states announced measures to curb the spread of corona virus.Prime Minister Narendra Modi in an address to the nation last week urged citizens to stay indoors from 7am to 9am–a move that he said would be a crucial test for a country to assess its abilities to fight the pandemic.India, like other most countries around the world, is battling with the deadly corona virus, which has infected over 315 people in the country so far.
Report : Nimai Charan Panda