March 28, 2020 8:33:26 pm
Amid various awareness campaigns deployed by the state government to curb the spread of COVID-19, a video of a police official donning a ‘Corona Helmet’ and explaining the public about the severity of the novel coronavirus has gone viral across social media.
Speaking to Indianexpress.com, police inspector S Rajeesh Babu, Villivakam, who is carrying out this unique awareness exercise, said he wanted to do something out-of-the-box to reach out to the common man. An as soon as he came across this Coronavirus-themed helmet, he readily agreed.
“On Thursday we were canvasing about social distancing in the market areas in Villivakkam. I saw a lady walking around the market without masks or any preventive measures, I asked her what will she do if she is affected by Corona, she replied what is Corona sir and that’s when I realised I need to think something out of the box to raise awareness amid the commoners. I sought the help of my friends, initially we tried raising awareness through placards and then we came up with the idea of a Corona themed helmet. After donning the helmet I went near the public who violated the Corona guidelines, they were actually scared, I saw that in their eyes,” he said.
The police officer added that the helmet initiative will be continued for the next three days and after that, they are planning to do something else to raise awareness about social distancing.
“People need to realise we are taking this much effort only to safeguard them, many people promised that they will follow all the rules and regulations to curb the spread of the virus, I can definitely say this initiative has made an impact amid the public,” he said.
Gowtham, a Chennai-based artist who had pioneered various awareness drives like ‘Walk for Plastic’ in the past had created this craft with a hope that it will have an impact on society. “I was reading all the reports about the impact of coronavirus even before the deadly virus reached our country. During the Janata curfew, I saw people roaming around the city without any fear of the virus. They didn’t take the crisis seriously; I decided I need to do something to raise awareness. I spoke to the Villivakkam Inspector Rajeesh sir and he was very supportive and immediately approved my Idea. It’s not common for police officials to do something like this, he has a sound knowledge about art and he wants to do something for the betterment of the society, he is the hero for my script,” he said.
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Gowtham added that he was sure that initiative will receive a favourable response because anything that is visually threatening will have a much more impact on the public.
“My first creative was placards and then I did this helmet. It was created with a broken helmet and a couple of papers in five hours. I know this Idea will work out and people will appreciate it. I believe in the process more than the results when people speak about my craft more than being happy, I am satisfied that they are understanding the seriousness of the virus. I have a lot of creative ideas like this left in my kitty, I have planned to do more such crafts, I hope that will also make a social impact,” he said.
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