Coronavirus: PM Modi Calls For Civil Curfew On Sunday


Prime Minister Narendra Modi has called for a Sunday shutdown to limit the rapidly expanding Coronavirus that has claimed over 9,000 lives globally, including 4 in India.

PM appealed to the people to observe a self-imposed curfew on March 22 from 7 am to 9 pm, saying no citizen, barring those in essential services, should get out of the house.

“I request all people in the country to get out of the house only when it is extremely necessary, try and do all work from home”, Modi said in his address to the nation.

The PM also announced the formation of a COVID-19 Economic Response Task Force led by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman to deal with economic challenges emerging out of the outbreak.

“This task force will remain in regular touch with all stakeholders, take their feedback and make decisions accordingly,” he said.

Here are the excerpts from his speech:

“I request people above the age of 60 to not venture out of their homes for the next few weeks.

Restrain is compulsory to protect ourselves and remain healthy. I request that for the coming weeks people should go out of their homes only if essential.

In earlier days, during blackouts at the time of wars, people kept their lights off. The drill was also done at Rome to make people practice it when needed.

Only those who are involved in providing essential services can get out.

March 22 will be a test for our effort to protect our nation from the virus.

Organisations such as NCC, NSS and sporting and religious bodies are requested to take this Janata curfew message to more and more people.

I also request you for another thing. Lakhs in hospitals, airports, in offices are busy working. People have worked for others without worrying about themselves. Their chances of getting infected is high but they have continued to do their work taking a huge personal risk. These are like protectors of the nation between the virus and the nation. The whole country salutes all these people.

I request you to express your gratitude to all these people on March 22. This will unite all of us.

On March 22, at 5 pm on our doors, balconies or wherever, for 5 minutes, express our gratitude for these workers. How? By clapping, by ringing a bell. I request local admin to blow a siren to inform everyone about this.

In tough times such as these, ensure that our essential services, our hospitals do not get unnecessarily pressured. I request all to avoid going to hospitals for routine checkups.

Only if it is absolutely essential, speak to your friendly doctors on the phone.

If you have taken a date for elective surgery, please try to postpone it if it is not urgent.

This virus is also impacting our economy. Under FM Nirmala Sitharaman, the government has decided to form Covid-19 economic recovery task force.

I request all traders – small or large – to also look after the welfare of those whose services you utilise.

We have taken measures to ensure that the supply of essential commodities like milk, medicine and food won’t be impacted. I urge all not to hoard these commodities and avoid panic buying.

I am certain that every Indian will continue to follow his/her responsibilities in the coming few days.

We must dedicate all our efforts to save ourselves from this contagion.

Everybody must play their role in safeguarding themselves and the people.”

Earlier in the day, the government banned all international flights entering India for a week starting this Sunday.

The government has also asked all senior citizens (above the age of 65) to stay at home. Similarly, all children below 10 have been advised to remain at home and not venture out.

PM Modi has been closely monitoring the situation to devise ways to strengthen India’s preparedness, including further enhancing testing facilities and actively engaging with individuals, local communities and organisations in chalking our mechanisms to fight the COVID-19 menace.

The next 15 days are crucial in India’s battle against the COVID-19 outbreak and all efforts are being made to contain the spread of the disease during this period and in April, said government officials on Wednesday. The effort is to flatten the curve of infected cases in this period and sustaining the same over April, ANI reported.


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