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We Lit Candles But We Also Had Fireworks. Here’s The Good, Bad And The Ugly Sides Of What We Did As A Nation

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Can we just take a moment to appreciate all that our government is doing to keep us safe from the coronavirus? I know things have taken a turn for the worse with the cases doubling overnight and the number of deaths increasing, but at least they are trying to reign it all in. Our government and our healthcare system are putting in the blood, sweat, and tears into stopping coronavirus, all we have to do is stay in the house, stay united and spread positivity. But it seems like that is also too big a task for us.

I’ll come to the point without beating around the bush. PM Modi asked us to light a candle, a diya or a flashlight for 9 minutes at 9 pm yesterday, it’s such a simple thing to ask of us. I agree that it won’t cure coronavirus, nor will it slow the spreading down, it is stupid to even think it would. But I liked lighting a diya on my balcony because it gave me a sense of hope. I think, PM Modi just asked to do this to bring the morale up (the lockdown hasn’t been easy on anyone) and maybe and spread some light and positivity during these horrible times.

But just like anything else in the world, this 9 pm 9-minute call also had three sides- the good, the bad and the ugly. Let’s break it down, shall we?

Also Read: Meet S Vinothini, A Pregnant Nurse Who Traveled 250 Kms To Fulfil Her Duty In Treating Patients With Coronavirus.

The Good

The population of India is around 138 crore people. Almost all those people switched off their lights at exactly 9 pm for exactly 9 minutes. They lit a candle or put a diya outside their doors or flashed a torchlight. This is amazing because it shows that no matter how much we fight and quarrel internally when it comes to a life-threatening issue, we can, and we will stand united.

And while the need of the hour remains better facilities, we know that this can’t be arranged quickly. Yes, we would like to relief measures, we want to see something concrete but hey, this is a ray of light in the literal sense and if it works, even for one person, haven’t we done better?

Also, according to the Ministry of Power, the demand in the grid went down from 1,17,300 MW at 8:49 pm to 85, 300 MW across India till 9:09 pm on April — a reduction of 32,000 MW (32GW). Sounds like savings to us.

The Bad

Indians have a very typical trait of bringing a dirty mix of religion and politics into every already existing issue. As you all might know that the coronavirus has now become the new base for the Hindu-Muslim fight that has been going on ever since we got Independence (just another thing to thank the British for). After PM Modi asked us to do this one small act of lighting candles, there were horrible trolls online. Some with Islamophobia slurs and most with trolls for Modi.

The man is running the largest democracy in the world, let’s give him some credit. Lighting candles and diyas, is not political nor is it a religious thing. It was simply an act to spread some positivity. To all those trolls I would just like to say that it wasn’t a compulsion and if you can’t appreciate, at least don’t criticize. But, most of all don’t sit behind a computer screen and insult because I, sure as hell don’t see you doing anything to make this bad situation better.

Also Read: #SpreadPositivity: This Little Girl From Arunachal Pradesh Has A Powerful Message For Us All And We Need To Listen To Her

The Ugly

While we were all peacefully lighting diyas and candles, I couldn’t help but notice some people mistook these nine minutes to be Diwali and starting bursting firecrackers. I don’t understand why we find it necessary to take things one step ahead. All they had to do was light diyas for nine minutes, how people find a way to mess that up is beyond me. It was to be quiet while still maintaining social distancing. In many places, this was completely forgotten.

A lot of celebrities like Sonam Kapoor and Taapsee Pannu spoke out about this on social media. Bursting firecrackers was not needed. Why couldn’t they just stick to what was asked of us? On one hand, the lockdown is decreasing pollution levels and on the other hand, people are trying their level best to keep them soaring high. It’s ridiculous.

We need to fight coronavirus head-on or else we are going to lose. This is not the time for an internal battle or for people to behave like overgrown children. If we want to survive through this storm, we have got to take some responsibilities, starting now.

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