Check-posts made out of bamboo, handwritten ‘No Entry’ signs, buckets of water with cakes of soap — this is how Boiragi Para, a small village of 250 families in Tripura’s Mohanpur sub-division, is fighting the novel coronavirus.
As the nationwide 21-day lockdown announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi is underway, Boiragi Para, and its thousand-odd people, have virtually cut themselves from any unregulated contact with the world outside. In fact, no one is allowed to enter the village without washing their hands.
Isak Kaipeng, a youth from the village said, “Coronavirus is a disease that has spread everywhere in the world. So, we have decided that whoever comes from outside has to wash hands and only then go inside. All people of Tripura, Bengali and tribals alike should follow suit. I feel people in towns and villages should have similar practices”.
A meeting with the village elders led the community to arrive at this decision. Now, posters that read ‘Lockdown Boiragi Para’ and ‘No entry without Permission (vehicles and People) signed off as ‘by order villagers’ can be seen at specific entry points to the village.
Samir Kalai, a 65-year-old senior citizen of the village, said, “We were compelled to build such kinds of ‘gates’ since the disease has spread everywhere. The government has declared lockdown all over the country. We have decided to stay safe as well”.
Located 52 Km away from Agartala city, Boiragi Para’s proactive quarantine initiative has been lauded by many.
Speaking to Indianexpress.com, West Tripura District Magistrate Sandeep Namdeo Mahatme said, “The community awareness is very high nowadays. Everybody is following the hand washing rule. If the community has developed such a self-regulated system, it is a good mechanism and it must be appreciated.”
Tripura has no reported positive COVID-19 case so far.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines