Video Editor: Deepthi Ramdas
Video Producer: Aastha Gulati
The 21-day lockdown in India to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus has left roads deserted and shops shut down. Similarly, in Jharkhand’s Deoghar, only a handful of people can be seen in otherwise busy areas.
Armed with a mask and sanitizer, I went to the bypass road and the Tower Chowk area on day 3 of the lockdown to see for myself how serious Deoghar’s residents were about the curfew.
Till a few days ago, one could see thousands of cars pass through the bypass stretch. Now, however, the roads are completely deserted. I could see only one car pass through in the time I was there. There were just five or six people walking around, that too for essential goods.
I was able to talk to a local, Abhay Kumar, who had got out of his house to buy essentials.
“I have to buy some medicines. It is very suffocating to sit at home nowadays, but it is necessary for us all.”
Having read reports of panic-buying and groceries, I asked him if locals were facing issues in fetching those. He answered in the affirmative.
“We are able to get all essential items. The government has fixed the price of essential goods. People shouldn’t, however, buy in bulk. I appeal to them to buy as judiciously and only according to need, so that no one is short and faces trouble.”
He told me that several people were buying up to 10 kgs of grain.
Later, I went to the Tower Chowk. Only a few medical shops were open and people were maintaining distance while buying. The area is buzzing with crowds and cars on regular days. Now, for the first time, there is space to stand.
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