New Delhi: After calling for applause for healthcare professionals, Prime Minister Narendra Modi Friday urged the nation to light candles and diyas for nine minutes at 9 pm Sunday to “defeat the despair” brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic.
“To defeat the darkness of despair and light our lives with hope, let us switch off all lights for nine minutes at 9 pm on Sunday (5 April) and illuminate our surroundings with candles, diyas, torch or mobile flashlights. Let us maintain social distancing during this,” he said in his video address to the nation Friday morning.
The Prime Minister also praised Indians “for their discipline and service”, terming it phenomenal. Modi also pointed out that the economically weaker sections of the society have been hurt by the 21-day lockdown, and stressed on support for them.
“Your discipline and service to the nation has been extraordinary during the last nine days of the lockdown,” Modi said. “Authorities have done everything to contain this situation. Your thanksgiving on March 22 has become an example for many countries who are emulating this now.”
Modi stresses on social distancing
His last address asking people to clap, ring bells or clang utensils to applaud the people rensering essential services had seen the public come out on the streets in groups on 22 March. This time, Modi emphasised that people should maintain social distancing Sunday, terming it the ‘Rambaan’ to fight epidemic. He urged the people not to come out in groups.
“Do remember we all are in our homes, and we are together in this. We have to cut through coronavirus pandemic darkness and move to a brighter tomorrow,” Modi said. “Many may think we are alone. Such questions might come up in your mind. But please remember, none of us is alone. The strength of 130 crores of India is with each one of us.”