New Delhi: Following Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s appeal for a ‘Janata curfew’ on Sunday, people have been urged to voluntarily stay indoors in order to curb the spread of coronavirus. Public transport has also been suspended or curtailed. All the markets and establishments except those dealing in essential goods and services will remain closed today.
After the curfew began, PM tweeted saying, “#JantaCurfew is on. Eminent personalities are encouraging a Stay At Home Sunday to fight Coronavirus. And, people’s support is emphatic.” Responding to a twitter user’s video of him taking part in the Janta Curfew, PM said, “Quality family time, television and some good food. Each of you is a valued soldier in this battle against COVID-19. Your being alert and cautious can help lakhs of other lives. #JantaCurfew.”
In order to further ask people to ensure social distancing, PM today urged people to use digital payments. In a tweet today, PM Modi said, “This is the time to ensure Social Distancing. Digital Payments help you do that.”
Former Infosys CFO Mohandas Pai tweeted today saying, “Folks #PaySafe #StaySafe use digital payments”. PM in response said, “Let’s listen to these stalwarts and adopt digital payments.”
Uninterrupted online banking services:
It is worth mentioning that the Indian Banks’ Association said most of the services the banks offer are available online. IBA requested customers to avail all non-essential services through mobile and online banking channels.
“We are working round-the-clock to ensure all our digital channels are up-to-date and have all the information that you may need during the period. In case you may still need assistance, you can call our branches or use the IVR facility through our call centre,” IBA further said.
Janta curfew call:
Modi on Thursday called for the ‘Janata curfew’ from 7 am to 9 pm on March 22, saying no citizen, barring those in essential services, should get out of their houses, and asserted that it will be a litmus test to show India’s readiness to take on the coronavirus challenge.
No passenger train will originate from any railway station in the country from midnight to 10 pm on Sunday while all suburban train services will be reduced to a bare minimum as well. Metro services, including in Delhi, Hyderabad and Mumbai, will remain suspended for the day. Air carriers like GoAir, IndiGo and Vistara have announced that they will be curtailing domestic operations on Sunday.
Traders’ body Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) has also announced that they will keep their establishments shut across the country for the ‘Janata curfew’.