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Friday, May 29, 2020

Lockdown Diary Day 55: Just take me home, mother tells dailywager son, Delhi cops help senior citizen perform wife’s last rites, and more

Here is a curated list of some interesting stories from across the country on Day 55 of India’s coronavirus lockdown

By: Express Web Desk | Updated: May 18, 2020 11:14:22 pm
A vegetable vendor carries his eight-member family on his rickshaw as he travels from Gurgaon to Bihar. (Express photo: Vishal Srivastav)

As India entered Lockdown 4.0 on Monday, which coincided with Day 55 of the nation-wide lockdown in place since March 25 in order to contain Covid-19 transmission, a number of states announced their guidelines outlining the activities that would and wouldn’t be permitted during this period. In the fourth phase of lockdown that is scheduled to end May 31, the central government has offered more relaxations in various activities and also more autonomy to states to decide upon red, orange and green zones. Karnataka banned entry of people from four states — Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra and Gujarat while Delhi government has allowed buses with only 20 passengers.

According to the last update by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, the total number of confirmed cases in India stood at 96,169 and the death toll at 3,029. Of the total tally, 56,316 are active cases while a total of 6,824 patients have been cured so far.

Here is a curated list of some interesting stories from across the country on Day 55

On the long journey back home, some welcome relief for migrants in MP

For the thousands of migrants going from Maharashtra to their homes in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, the bypass checkpoint at Madhya Pradesh’s Vidisha-Raisen border has come as a relief. No one walks past this point, or goes ahead empty stomach. Maybe because it is set up just below the hill that houses Emperor Ashoka’s Sanchi Stupas, but this checkpost seems to practice the ancient king’s preachings.

“Daily, we see about 10,000-15,000 people pass by, mostly from Maharashtra. We are making sure not a single person passes by on foot, or even bicycle. We accommodate them in empty buses and trucks,” says Ishwar Baghel, Sub-Inspector, Vidisha. “If the need arises, the collector arranges for a bus. But no one is passing on foot.”

Baghel, who has been deployed at the state border since March 28, says the number of walkers have reduced in the past few days. “But whoever comes walking is provided with transportation.”

Construction workers in Delhi on Monday.

Delhi Police help senior citizen perform wife’s last rites amid lockdown

Delhi Police Monday helped a senior citizen in performing the last rites of his 62-year-old wife by lending shoulder to the bier and transporting the body to the cremation ground amid the lockdown imposed to arrest COVID-19 spread, officials said. Jaspal Singh, used to live at Lakhpat Colony in Meethapur Extension, with his ailing wife and a 26-year-old mentally challenged son. Last night, his wife slept after having dinner but did not wake up this morning.

Singh came to Jaitpur Police Station in southeast Delhi to inform SHO Anand Swaroop about his wife’s demise, who had been ill since November 2019. “He hailed from Amritsar in Punjab and had no relatives in Delhi. As he could not make arrangements for the last rites alone, he sought help from police,” said R P Meena, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Southeast) told PTI. Swaroop deputed constables Rahul, Ravikant, Parveen, Sunil and Dharameder to help Singh. The five personnel accompanied Singh to his residence, made all the arrangements, performed the cremation of the woman, and then dropped Singh to his residence, he said.

Gurgaon: Just take me home, mother tells daily-wager son

As a teary-eyed Raji Devi watched a bus carrying migrant workers to Uttar Pradesh drive off in the distance, she turned to her son, told him that she just wanted to be home and would never want to see a big city again.
She couldn’t get hold of a seat on the bus and neither could her son Sahab Lal, who worked as a construction labourer in Gurgaon. The 70-something woman had come to the city a few months ago from the village and was now desperate to leave. She held her son’s hands and told him she wouldn’t  be back to bother him and it’s okay if he could not be there for her last rites either.

The family of seven — Raji Devi, Sahab Lal, his wife and two children, his nephew and his wife — were among the hundreds waiting at the community centre at Sector 9A Gurgaon from where state transport buses were taking stranded migrants to Bulandshahr in Uttar Pradesh.

Made for theatre, Bengali film takes OTT route during lockdown

In a first, a Bengali movie ‘Iye: The Others, which was made for theatres, will now be released on OTT platform on next
Friday, director Debesh Chatterjee said.  The film, made in 2018, had travelled to several film festivals including Berlin and got the CBFC certificate last year for release in theatres, said Chatterjee, who is known more as a thespian.
“We were supposed to release the film in theatres by this time, but the novel coronavirus and the lockdown have
made everything uncertain. It is not known when cinema halls will open again, so we had to think about other options,” he told PTI. He said the film, which is not of mainstream genre, will be streamed at Mycinemahall App from May 22. All theatres are now closed because of the lockdown which entered into its fourth phase on Monday.

Christians in Arunachal offer schools to govt for quarantine centres

Extending help to the Arunachal Pradesh goevrnment, the Christian community in the state has offered various assets under them, including schools and churches, for use as quarantine centres. Several schools run by the Catholic churches across the state have been given to the government to be used as quarantine centres.
The schools under the diocese of Itanagar located at Seppa, Daporijo, Basar, Kaying, Aalo, Tato, Yingkiong and Mebo
have already been taken over by the government to serve as quarantine centres. Arunachal Christian Forum (ACF) president Toko Teki said the diocese is willing to place other schools too at the  service of the government if situation demand.

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