Prime Minister Narendra Modi this morning tweeted a video of an old homeless woman with an appeal to people across country as India battles novel coronavirus or COVID-19. "Let's respect the sentiments of this mother and stay at home. She is giving us this message," PM Modi wrote in Hindi.
In the 11-second clip that he shared, an old homeless woman can be seen near a makeshift house, clanging a steel plate. This was on the day when millions across the country observed PM Modi's call to observe a 14-hour home quarantine, dubbed as "Janata (public) Curfew".
The woman in Hyderabad was one of the many people across the country who expressed gratitude - from their balconies - to health professionals on Sunday evening by clanging plates and clapping after PM's appeal. A resident, Pardhu, who shot the clip, is now receiving offers for help for the old woman.
आइए इस मां की भावना का आदर करें और घर में रहें। वो हमें यही संदेश दे रही है। https://t.co/z555vu2qvz— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) March 24, 2020
In a 29-minute televised address on Thursday, PM Modi had said: "There is no cure for this (coronavirus), so we need to remain healthy. We need to avoid crowds and stay home. Social distancing is critical. If you think you can roam around as usual and feel you will not be at risk, this is incorrect; you are endangering yourself and your family."
He had also asked citizens to stand at their doors, windows and balconies at 5 pm on Sunday and clap, clang utensils or ring bells in a show of support to those providing essential services.
On Sunday evening, after observing a 10-hour home quarantine, people across the country - including top celebrities like Amitabh Bachchan - came out in their balconies to thank medical professionals at a time when world is dealing with pandemic.
Sounds of utensils beings clanged, conch shells and claps rent the air for minutes in several parts of the country.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi called the show of support a "victory". "This (referring to the clapping and noise) is the sound of thanks and also the start of victory in a long battle against coronavirus. Let us carry this determination and settle down for a long fight," he tweeted.
"The country has thanked each person who has taken part in the fight against the novel coronavirus," he added.
The 14-hour self-curfew call - one of the biggest national exercises in the world - was seen as a practice run of social distancing, the only way so far to break the chain of transmission and stop the virus from spreading, according to medical experts.