The entire nation has watched the Prime Minister Narendra Modi appealing to all of us with folded hands not to step out of our homes for the next 21 days, i.e. till April 14. This nationwide lockdown has been enforced since last midnight. All of us should extend our fullest support to the Prime Minister. We must not cross, what the PM called, the 'laxman rekha' of our doorstep.
The PM cautioned that if we failed to observe 21 days' lockdown, the horrible consequences will push the nation 21 years back in time. He also advised people not to self-medicate if they observe virus symptoms. He asked people to refrain from believing rumours and superstitions.
The PM promised that more testing facilities, personal protective equipment, isolation beds, ICU beds and ventilators will be provided to health care institutions on a priority basis. Rs 15,000 crore will be spent to tone up our health infrastructure.
While calling for patience and discipline, the PM said that our actions during these 21 days will decide the full effect of this global pandemic in India.
Late in the night, in response to reports about panic buying by some people in several cities, the PM, in a tweet, told people not to panic. He assured that essential commodities will be made available to people. The Centre and state governments have prepared guidelines to provide essential commodities to people.
Now that you have all heard what the PM said, it is my appeal to you again, with folded hands, to stay in your homes to break the chain of this deadly pandemic. I know it will be a difficult task for the next 21 days, but there is no other option. I know your jobs, your business will be affected, but saving your life and the lives of your near and dear ones is of paramount importance.
If we make mistakes and defy lockdowns, the consequences will be terrible. The death toll will mount rapidly and there will be hardly anybody left to collect the bodies from the roadside. So let us rule out that dreaded possibility right now by staying in our homes and break this deadly chain.
Some people are raising questions about why this action was taken late. This is not the right time for the blame game. Do not forget, it was our Prime Minister who gauged the threat from the beginning, and in a measured manner, he took a series of steps, first to bring in stranded Indians and at the same time, to tone up our health infrastructure. These steps were taken at the right time. The government has done and is doing a lot, but the question is: what are the people doing? They must observe lockdowns and stay at homes for their own survival.
Think of those doctors, nurses, paramedical staff, policemen, media persons, reporters who are out toiling day and night, away from their families. Can we not at least stay in our homes for the next 21 days and face this big challenge with discipline and fortitude?
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