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As I stepped out to understand the effects of the lockdown, I came across this young family of daily wagers walking back towards the building under construction. Abandoned by the builder, they make do with limited rations.

(Photo: Sanjoy Chatterjee)

In Pics: How the World is Dealing With Lockdowns Due to COVID-19

With no work, no meeting, no stepping out, internet and social media became our only gateway for interactions.

Published16 May 2020, 09:34 AM IST
3 min read

As Earth was swiftly crowned by the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, countries across the globe ordered lockdown. We earthlings sought refuge in our homes, sometimes lucky enough to have the company of our families, but mostly lonely amidst our furniture and basic essentials.

With no work, no meeting with friends, no stepping out, the telephone, internet and social media became our only gateway for interactions.

Long are the days, longer the nights; voices float in our heads, some of it wrong, some of it right. We battle on, one day at a time, we the lonesome earthlings; universally connected by the malaise and yet alone.

Amidst the lockdown, I began to document those who must step out, even fleetingly or on compulsion mapping the sudden transition of us humans from being social animals to practicing social distancing to curtail the threat.

The photo essay has been my effort to chronicle the impact the pandemic has had on the lives of people around us and redefined a new normal for everyone, where the mask has become a mandatory accessory to protect us as well as others.

The mask covers our mouth and nose and protects us from the threat of germs while leaving the role of communicating our smile through our eyes.

This journey will hopefully come to an end soon in the near future. But it would have redefined our ways of living our lives in more ways than one.

The Earth has begun to heal with stories of birds and butterflies, animals and fish coming back to many a places they had avoided earlier, mountain ranges emerging clear in distant sightings; so we live in hope of recovering from this global pandemic and reviving our social web. Till that magic hour we live as lonesome earthlings.

(Sanjoy Chatterjee gave up the conventional logic of an MBA to follow the Inner Eye. A graduate from the Parsons School of Design, New York, his photographs have won him numerous awards worldwide. He has co-conceptualised, curated, photographed and designed a coffee table book, Mission XI Million for the legacy programme of FIFA U-17 World Cup with AIFF and the Ministry of Sports. He tweets @sunofjoy.)

We'll get through this! Meanwhile, here's all you need to know about the Coronavirus outbreak to keep yourself safe, informed, and updated.

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