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Thursday, March 26, 2020

#Socialdistancing - Lockdown - Vijayawada shows the way !!

One picture seen on twitter made me post this ~ and am really moved by this thoughtful act by the people and Govt.   River Krishna,  is the fourth longest river which flows entirely in India, after the Ganges, Godavari and Narmada. One for sure would not miss the long bridge on this river nearer Bejawada [Vijayawada station]. 

Covid-19 – imperative that you stay at home ! ~ no reasons are good enough. Just be at home.   BCCI president Sourav Ganguly has come forward in support of those affected by the 21-day lockdown due to COVID-19 pandemic, pledging to donate rice worth Rs 50 lakh for the underprivileged.  Ganguly along with Lal Baba Rice will provide for the needy people who have been put in government schools for safety and security, the Cricket Association of Bengal announced in a statement.

"Inspiring to see people across India coming together despite being physically apart to applaud workers on the frontlines combatting COVID-19," Acting Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia Alice G Wells said in a tweet on Monday.  The UN has expressed solidarity with India in its fight against coronavirus, with a top official at the world body's health agency praising Prime Minister Narendra Modi's 21-day nationwide lockdown as a "comprehensive and robust" response to the raging COVID-19 pandemic.

In one country after the other, lockdowns have emerged as the key response against the coronavirus pandemic. There are, however, significant differences between lockdowns across the countries, and these variations have an impact on a nation’s ability to contain the spread of Covid-19 and reduce fatalities.  China, the epicenter of the coronavirus, implemented the harshest form of lockdown in Wuhan after nearly 30 deaths had occurred. In about two months, China  managed to bring down the number of daily new cases to single digits.  In contrast, Italy — the new epicenter — implemented a gradual and less stringent nationwide lockdown that began only after 800 deaths. As a consequence, Italy is nowhere close to China when it comes to bringing the outbreak under control.

At least 3,700 persons were arrested on charges of violating the island-wide police curfew currently in effect in Sri Lanka as a preventive measure against the coronavirus pandemic, according to the senior officer on Thursday. A total of 702 vehicles, including motorcycles and three-wheelers were also seized by the police, he further added. On Friday, the Sri Lankan government had announced a nationwide curfew until March 23 as a preventive measure against the coronavirus pandemic.

We the citizens of India must abide by all the instructions and ensure that our Nation emerges unscathed – winning the dreaded Corona Virus and here is how one city shows us the way .. if our city is not so, we should feel ashamed !

Bezawada (as Vijayawada was known then) was founded around 626 A.D. by Paricchedi Kings. Vijayawada was ruled by King Madhava Varma  of Vishnukundina dynasty).   Chinese  traveller Xuanzang stayed a few years in Bezawada in around 640 A.D.

Earlier known as Bezawada, Vijayawada is a Commercial city with a hot climate – you can feel the heat as the train enters this region ~ Indian Railways has assigned the station code - "BZA".  This politically active city is well connected by road, air and more specifically by rail.  It is a major Railway junction located in South Central Railway.  Trains from Tamilnadu towards Hyderabad pass through ~ trains to Howrah & beyond; the National Capital and beyond – all have to compulsorily pass through this Junction.  The station has 10 platforms and is one of the busiest with more than 250 express and 150 freight trains passing through it.  The station was constructed in 1888 when the Southern Maharatta Railway's main eastward route was connected with other lines going through Vijayawada. By some accounts, an average of 70,000 people board different trains each day and an equal number of commuters exit trains at the station.

This is not about the history or of the culture of the people but how the people of Vijayawada and the Govt has reacted positively to lockdown announced by the Govt.  The ever busy Railway station, the city streaming with visitors from neighbouring State and districts – all appeared a thing of the past – as lockdown was announced.

Andhra Pradesh Govt has swiftly shifted Rytu bazaars (Govt run vegetable markets) where farmers directly sell vegetables in Vijayawada to nearer open grounds to ensure Social distancing among people.  Photos on twitter show demarcations clearly made to keep distance between people while they stand and people faithfully following them.

Hail thy people; hail their discipline – Vijayawada is a shining example.  Let us follow them.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
PS  :  In 2011 a Telegu film based on vijaywada gang war - directed by Vivek Krishna and produced by Ram Gopal Varma, featuring  Naga Chaitanya and Amala Paul was released.  It reportedly was a disaster in box office.

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