• Adyar Times

Our neighbourhood during the lockdown

Updated: Apr 8, 2020

Residents on their terrace cheer aloud by ringing bells. Photo Courtesy : Hema Ravi

Residents got a taste of a day of lockdown on Sunday - 22 March. A very appreciated lockdown in fact; videos by celebrities and children on why we must practice social distancing that day flooded the media.

During the lockdown, the streets were empty and shops shut down. Public areas like the parks were closed down and so was Elliot’s beach. Banners on CoronaVirus and the importance of social distancing were placed at strategic places and police did rounds announcing the same.

As evening approached, few were seen going to major landmarks to take photos of the empty streets and the landmarks standing alone in glory. Speeding vehicles, helmet-less reckless driving went unchecked. At exactly 5 pm, residents came out to the balcony and walkways and clapped, rang bells loudly. It was a moment of joy for all.

A day later, as the nation-wide shutdown was announced, there was initial confusion on how long and how much of essentials would be available. But as a community, everyone came together. RWA WhatsApps were flooded with requests to give leave to maids with full salaries, and an assurance of help to anyone in need of supplies in case needed.

The ever busy MG Road dons a serene look

On the first day of the lockdown, traffic was almost nil, but essential services that included medical and provision stores, vegetable, fruits and protein shops, petrol bunks, remained open. Places of worship were closed for the public. Police patrolled streets and questioned the movement of passing people. Corporation and conservancy workers were seen disinfecting many places.

As days progressed, the police got stricter with the lockdown enforcement. Shops strictly enforced social distancing by allowing only one person at a time inside and drawing boxes for queues. The Corporation provided many handwashing facilities in public places. The conservancy staff also worked to keep our area clean.

Many communities came together to fundraise for the conservancy workers and provide supplies for the daily wagers, stranded migration workers and the like. Communities also came together to provide food for the working conservancy staff who normally relied on the roadside hotels.

This lockdown has been a learning for everyone and has brought out the best in us as a community. If you want to share about the good work of Samaritans who have helped you through this difficult time of COVID Lockdown, do write to us along with a photo to adyartimes@gmail.com.

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