It’s been one entire year since *shudders* Janta Curfew, the day that saw every citizen locked in from 7 am to 9 pm, a precursor to the months of lockdown that were to follow. As India falls ever deeper into the throes of a second wave, the memory of this curfew is making a hard-hitting comeback
The 14-hour janta curfew on March 22nd involved the infamous ‘5 minute thali banging’, that saw everyone come out to their windows and bang their utensils.
Here’s a little refresher of that fateful day.
On 22nd March 2020, let us observe a Janata Curfew and add strength to the fight against COVID-19. #IndiaFightsCorona. pic.twitter.com/qOqhQaJES5— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) March 19, 2020
On March 24, 2020, PM Modi announced a 21-day nationwide lockdown. This was extended thrice, with the final phase starting on May 18, and finishing on May 31, 2020.
By March 26, the exodus of migrant workers had begun.
By March 28, India had 1000 confirmed cases, and the PM Cares fund was set up.
On May 4th, liquor shops were reopened, leading to long and snaking lines at every outlet.
On May 7, phase 1 of the Vande Bharat mission began, to get citizens abroad back to India.
By the time India began the slow process of ‘Unlock Phase 1’ around June 2020, millions of migrant workers had already endured unimaginable suffering.
An estimated 10 million migrants walked thousands of kilometres to get home as they was no transport available – they suffered food shortages, and they had no source of income. Many of them died, however the government has stated that no data was maintained on the number of migrants who had either died, or become unemployed, as a result of the pandemic.
July 1, India implemented Unlock 2.0, with new guidelines. July 29 saw the government announce guidelines for Unlock 3.0.
Trials for Covaxin and Covishield were also underway through July and August. As of August 20, India had reported a total of 28.37 lakh cases, of which 6.86 lakh were active cases.
India’s GDP contracted by 23.9% in the April to June quarter.
On December 1, farmer protests flared up around the country in response to the contentious farm laws the Centre wants to implement.
On December 30, several Indian cities imposed night curfews after six arrivals from the UK tested positive for the new strain.
On January 16, 2021, the inoculation drive began in India, with frontline workers and the elderly getting vaccinated.
February 2021 saw an upsurge in daily new covid cases in Kerala, Maharashtra, Punjab, Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh.
Now, India is looking at the looming second wave of the virus, with 46,951 fresh cases in the last 24 hours – the biggest single-day jump since November 7. The total stands at 1,16,46,081 cases.
Let’s just hope we don’t have to resort to yet another nationwide lockdown again. So wear your masks and stay safe!