Another day, another lockdown but this time, it’s the worlds second most populous country. As countries start to wake the f*** up and realise how bad this virus is, governments around the world are hitting that lockdown button almost as easily as China did when the outbreak first began.
Announced just a few hours ago, the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, has ordered a 21 day “total lockdown” of the entire country starting today.
In case you’re wondering what a “total lockdown” is exactly, it basically means that no one will be allowed to even come out of their homes. So yes, it’s exactly like what China did in the Hubei Province, except WITH 1.3 BILLION PEOPLE.
“There will be a total ban of coming out of your homes,” prime minister, Narendra Modi, announced on television Tuesday night, giving Indians less than four hours’ notice before the order took effect at 12:01 a.m.
While it may seem like an extreme decision, the region is starting to report a spike in cases and India itself already has 500 of their own. If you extend that to include the countries that share a border with India (excluding China), the number then shoots up to 1117.
There’s no explaining the four hour notice but with whats going on globally, I guess it becomes somewhat understandable. Add to this the Indian PM’s impressive way with words, it’s hard not to get behind the lockdown.
“To save India, to save its every citizen, you, your family… every street, every neighbourhood is being put under lockdown.
“If you can’t handle these 21 days, this country will go back 21 years,” he said. “The only option is social distancing, to remain away from each other. There is no way out to escape from coronavirus besides this.”
That 21 days to 21 years line is almost as iconic as Idris Elba cancelling the apocalypse in pacific rim, but better because.. you know, real life.
Impressive speech aside, the PM didn’t shed light on how people are going to be able to get food, water and other necessities needed to survive with just a 4 hour notice. If you thought things in Malaysia were bad, imagine how it’s gonna be in the Indian equivalent to Jaya Grocer.
In fact, there’s yet to be any other detail about the total lockdown other than.. the announcement of the total lockdown. That being said, there can be no denying just how much of a challenge putting a country as densely packed as India into lockdown can be.
As densely packed as it is however, one of the advantages India has is that their population is relatively young, having a median age of just 28. With the virus having a high mortality rate among the elderly and those with pre-existing conditions, hopefully this bring some relief for the billions of Indians worried about being put into lockdown today.