BH CORRESPONDENT, Kolkata: On Sunday at 5 pm, Prime Minister Narendra Modi wanted India to come together to appreciate the efforts of the doctors, nurses, media and other officials who are fighting tooth and nail against the coronavirus pandemic. He also urged people to stay at home, which he termed as ‘Janta Curfew’. He encouraged people to come out on balconies, rooftops and windows and clap, play instruments, thaalis and whatever one could get their hands on for five minutes.
And India answered. That too, in a grand fashion. Thaalis, bells and conch shells formed the bulk of the instruments in the midst of thunderous clapping. While Italy might have been much more stylish and musical with the help of proper musical instruments and songs, we went more freestyle. Well, should we call it, we were more traditional. Just, like the world knows us. It is, after all, a country where jugaad is the order of the day.
— Gyayak Jain (@GyayakJ49425853) March 22, 2020
Heard through the lens of a bigger soundscape, the musical cacophony was not very different from temples erupting in musical joy during festivals. While a few guitars might have strummed, the match was clearly won by the pious sounds of conch shells blowing in the melody beds of jingling bells and clanging kaansha-thaalis. Soon, #ThaliBajao ,#5baje5minute and #ThankYouPM started trending on social media.
— Shobha Karandlaje (@ShobhaBJP) March 22, 2020
When my 90 year old grandma came out to participate in this celebration, I saw an amazing smile on her face.
Good PM – Great Idea – Happy Faces – In time of panic. 🚩🥳🇮🇳🕉️#CoronaVirusUpdate #JantaCurfew #JantaCurfewPledge #ThaliBajao pic.twitter.com/nyLvtiUxt5
— Jake (@jai_lunawat) March 22, 2020
This is truly emotional!
Mother of PM @narendramodi expresses her gratitude towards doctors, nurses and emergency services personnel as #IndiaFightsCorona#5baje5minute #IndiaComeTogether pic.twitter.com/oSrX6qlUfq
— RSPrasad Office (@OfficeOfRSP) March 22, 2020
— KaptanHindustan (@GautamTrivedi_) March 22, 2020
Below is the video of a housing society in Bengaluru participating in Janta Curfew.
Now, the PM categorically mentioned in his nation address to stand on the balcony and applaud the efforts of those working in this time of coronavirus outbreak, but then, what we saw on the ground was vastly different. Of course, there were a lot of them who understand the impact of deadly coronavirus, and how important self-isolation and social distancing are in this time. But men, women, children of all age groups with drums, bells and patakas— came out on streets to support the unsung heroes of our society. In many parts of the country, processions were held in large group thus defying the very purpose of Janta Curfew. The videos, and photographs were viral on social media. To this was added the exhilarating sound of bursting crackers which over-enthusiastic celebrators hoard for weddings or plain kicks. They just need an excuse to let loose those sparks.
And netizens didn’t take time to slam those who hit the streets on Janta Curfew day, especially when the death toll of coronavirus in India went to six.
Corona’s wedding procession 🙂pic.twitter.com/uH2IQLtlcN
— Srivatsa (@srivatsayb) March 22, 2020
— Kanimozhi Manoharan (@kani_manoharan) March 22, 2020
Bengali filmmaker Ranjan Ghosh took to social media and shared a video where a group can be seen celebrating on the road with an Indian flag on Janta Curfew day.
— Bidita Bag 🇮🇳 (@biditabag) March 22, 2020
Bengali actor Parambrata Chatterjee wrote on Twitter that the West Bengal government has taken the right decision to lockdown the state in the time of coronavirus crisis. And he wishes that this complete lockdown will at least instil sense into the minds of those people who took to the streets on Janta Curfew day. “#lockdownkolkata Welcome decision! Hope this instils some sense in people who’re taking to streets in bunches to have fun! thumbs up to the state government for their proactive steps & for sparing a thought for the homeless in these trying times!,” tweeted Parambrata.
Another user Anisa Chakraborty wants the government to take action against those who didn’t abide by the guideline and came outdoors. In fact, in Maharashtra nine people were allegedly arrested for playing cricket during Janta Curfew and violating government’s order of curfew in which five or more people can not gather at one place.