India lockdown diary, Day 15: Morning walkers held in Mumbai; stranded Italian tourist finds home in

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From ex-students delivering medicines to their teachers in Kolkata to timber smuggling in Jammu and Kashmir, here is a list of interesting stories from across the country on Day 14 of the lockdown.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: April 8, 2020 10:57:15 pm

A deserted look of Worli Sea Face in Mumbai on Wednesday.

In its third week of the 21-day lockdown, the death toll in the country rose to 149 with 5,274 as the number of coronavirus cases, the Health Ministry said on Wednesday. “In last 24 hours, 773 cases and 32 deaths have been reported,” it said.  The Ministry also assuaged the fears of lack of hydroxycholoroquine as India lifted its ban on the export of the drug in a bid to provide aid to foreign countries struck heavily by the virus. It assured there will be no shortage of the drug now or in the future.

Here is a curated list of some striking stories from across the country on Day 15

Alumni of Kolkata school deliver groceries, medicines to ex-teachers

In a Maruti-800 car with a sticker pasted on its windshield–‘Emergency Medicine Supply’ — about 40 people in South Kolkata have taken up the task to supply medicines and groceries to their former teachers in their late 70s and 80s. An alumnus of South Point School, Anupam Sen, along with other schoolmates, had a list of 15 former teachers, which included 89-year-old Dipali Sinha Roy, a widow living alone near Charu Market whose both daughters are settled in Europe.

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 Six major road junctions in east Kolkata now have street art asking people to stay at home. (Express photo: Partha Paul)

“I was running out of medicines, and to my surprise, I got a call from them on March 24. They took the list of my monthly requirement of medicines and groceries,” Roy, who taught Bengali language at the school, told PTI. She is hypertensive and suffers from heart ailment.

The group , ‘Pointers Who Care’, was formed 13 years ago, initially to lend emotional support to their retired teachers living a lonely life away from their children, many of whom had settled abroad. (PTI)

12 held for morning walks in Mumbai

In violation of the ongoing lockdown, 12 persons were arrested for going out for their morning walks. These people were spotted by the police on roads in Navi Mumbai’s Panvel area today. They were booked under the Indian Penal Code Section 188 (disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant) and later released on bail, the official said. the Mumbai Police said.

 For the well being of physical and mental health during the lock-down period due to Covid 19 pandemic. Navi Mumbaikars embark on physical exercises by jogging and walking in the early morning hours.

“From today onwards, retail outlets of Big Bazaar, Reliance Mart, and fruit, vegetable, fish and mutton shops, and restaurants accepting takeaway orders here will remain open till 5 pm while chemist shops and Agriculture Produce Market Committees (APMCs) will function as usual,” he said. (PTI)

 Volunteers to help police fight COVID-19 in Central Delhi

The Delhi Police, in its bid to curb the spread of the virus, launched a COVID-19 volunteers scheme in central Delhi. Ten healthy volunteers, including women, have been selected from 15 Central district police stations, who will be engaged in community policing, they added.

 (Source: Twitter/Delhi Police)

“At food distribution centres, chemist shops, general stores and schools, where ration is being distributed, they will spread awareness about the importance of social distancing and also ensure that it is followed when people stand in queues,” Deputy Commissioner of Police (Central) Sanjay Bhatia said. Besides, the volunteers will also act as informers, the officer added. They will keep a tab on any kind of violation, including flouting of lockdown rules, hoarding or overcharging of essential items, he said. (PTI)

Stranded Italian tourist finds home in Assam

A family in Assam took in an Italian before the 21-day lockdown was enforced as the tourist tried booking a hotel but in vain. He wanted to stay in the railway retiring room but was not allowed to do so. He put out some requests about couch-surfing but no one accepted. Someone even told him he could spend the night in a gurdwara but he was not sure how to go about it. He then met Deepak Sharma, a retired bank official, who brought him home and offered him a room in his house. Sharma said he informed the DGP office about Allegrini’s stay and also submitted his passport and visa copies to the nearest police station.

“I love the Sharma family. It feels like I’m a part of it. The son, mum and dad are lovely and my brother (Sharma’s son) is too. We do so many activities together: we’re currently working on the land in front of the house and planting vegetables, just to make sure we’ll have enough food throughout this crisis,” Giovanni Allegrini said. (PTI)

Bengali TV shows of early 2000s make a comeback

As many TV shows of the early 1990s made a comeback on prime time slots, Bengal too has released several popular mega soaps of the early 2000s. Prominent among the lot is ‘Gaaner Oparey’, helmed by late Rituparno Ghosh as creative director, which had given the Bengali audience a new, fresh content, different from the repetitive tearjerker stuff of telly soaps.

“I am happy to bring back Gaaner Oparey, our first TV production, on telly before the audiences again after almost a decade. It had set a new benchmark in Bengali serials and the credit goes to Rituparno Ghosh and the team,” Prosenjit Chatterjee, the producer of the serial, said. (PTI)

Students offer ‘synchronised global prayers’ for Covid-19 patients

Students from across the globe have been offering “Synchronised Global Prayers” for those infected with COVID-19 and healthcare workers. The prayers were started by the Indian Yoga Association (IYA) on Monday and can be performed at either 8 am or 6 pm as per the Indian Standard Time.

Students from universities across the world are sharing videos and pictures of them offering prayers using hashtag “together we can” and “synchronisedglobalprayers”.

According to IYA authorities, a group involved in the Global Consciousness Project at USA”s Princeton University will also be studying changes in the randomness or vibes during the period. Several universities in India as well as the All India Council of Technical Education (AICTE) has sent advisories to colleges and technical institutions for students to participate in the initiative. (PTI)

Brazilian Prez invokes Ramayana while seeking hydroxychloroquine from India

In a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, seeking supply of anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro cited Indian epic Ramayana, mentioning the story of how Lord Hanuman brought a holy medicine from the Himalayas to save the life of Lakshmana.

“Just as Lord Hanuman brought the holy medicine from the Himalayas to save the life of Lord Rama’s brother Lakshmana, and Jesus healed those who were sick and restored the sight to Bartimeu, India and Brazil will overcome this global crisis by joining forces and sharing blessings for the sake of all peoples,” Bolsonaro said in the letter.

Brazil, the largest country in Latin America, has recorded close to 14,000 coronavirus cases and over 660 deaths due to the disease. Globally, the virus has killed over 75,000 people and infected more than 13 lakh. (PTI)


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