New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday addressed the nation over the issue of the coronavirus outbreak, a global pandemic that has so far claimed the lives of four Indians and infected 173 across the nation. "This crisis has engulfed the entire human race. For the past two months, we have been watching with concern the news about coronavirus spreading across the world," said Modi.
Here are the top quotes from his speech:
1. "Even World War I and II did not affect as many countries as coronavirus has done. For the last few days, it looks like if we are safe from coronavirus. This belief is not right. Hence, it is very important for every Indian to remain aware and alert."
2. "Resolution and restraint is very important in combat against this global epidemic. As citizens, people need to strengthen their resolve to follow the advisories issues by state and central governments to fight coronavirus. Restraint is compulsory to protect ourselves and remain healthy. I request that for the coming weeks people should go out of their homes only if essential."
3. "In such a time, only one mantra works — 'The world is healthy when we are healthy'. We need to avoid crowds and stay at home. Social distancing is very necessary in the current phase of the coronavirus pandemic. If you feel you are okay and nothing will happen to you, it's wrong. By doing this, you are doing injustice to yourself and your loved ones."
4. "On March 22, from 7am to 9pm, all countrymen have to follow 'Janata' curfew. The success of 'Janata' curfew and its experiences will also prepare us for the challenges to come. I request the NCC, NSS, civil socities, and others to help enforce the curfew. I request all youth services to help make people aware of the curfew over the next two days. Call 10 new people and make them aware of the curfew."
5. "I would like, on Sunday, March 22, for us to offer thanks to all such people who are providing essential services in such time. On Sunday at 5pm, let us stand at the doors and balconies of our houses and applaud these people for five minutes — by clapping, banging plates and pans."
6. "Do not crowd the hospital for any non-essential treatment. Preferably, consult doctors on phone for minor ailments. Postpone your non-critical surgeries by a month so the burden on our hospitals and health infrastructure does not stretch them out."
7. "Do not deduct the wages of those people who do not turn up at jobs. Behave with kindness and consideration in such a situation as they also have to run their lives and protect their families."