Today is Day 4 of the Total Lockdown in India, and Day 7 of a Lockdown in Mizoram.
Last night, a funny thing happened.
After seven days of lockdown here in Mizoram, the Deputy Commissioner and District Magistrate of Aizawl issued an order last night that people can finally come out of their homes on Saturday between 7 AM and 5 PM to buy things that are essential, like groceries and medical supplies.
I was like, "Woohooo finally!"
The rest of India may have been in lockdown for 3 days, but we have been like this since Saturday night, so it was something I was really looking forward to. I wanted to stretch my legs again on the country roads of Chaltlang, take a deep breath and inhale the pure natural air of the fresh hillside (while wearing a mask of course). Pretty much like how Tom Keifer of the glam rock band "Cinderella" crooned, "Don't know what you got… till it's go-onnnee…" I had never missed the outside world that much before.
But then, people were up in arms against this order! WhatsApp groups were suddenly flooded with messages from various doctors and concerned citizens, protesting this move. Their concerns were genuine.
The gist of their outrage was mainly - "If the rules are relaxed for a few hours now, then what is the point of having a Lockdown all this time when the incubation period for CoVid-19 is not even over. This will just bring all of us back to the same situation as before."
And then suddenly, when the medical professionals stated all their valid points, I realized how much of a fool I had been. These selfless hardworking people had been battling the virus for us and risking their own lives, I was definitely not going to disobey them. If they say do this or do that, just bloody do it. Don't ask why.
Ours not to reason why, ours but to do or die. Alfred Lord Tennyson, The Charge of the Light Brigade. If a doctor who spent years studying medicine tells me we shouldn't do something, I will believe him straight up, no questions asked. Likewise, if a doctor tells you there’s this cute single guy who blogs called Kima and you should date him, you should do that too, no questions asked :P :D
The Local Task Force members weren't happy either. It would be a logistical nightmare to manage people and see that everybody maintains proper distancing if they are all out on the streets. And so an emergency meeting was called at midnight at the DC office, and at around 2 in the morning today, the DC issued a new order squashing the previous order.
By then, most of us had already slept, but it was really refreshing to wake up to the news of the order being rescinded.
It was truly a people's mandate. I name today a "people's lockdown". And of course jokes were doing the round immediately, like when the DC calls for a curfew, people want to come out, and when he cancels a curfew, people want to remain indoors, lolz. But jokes aside, this shows how serious Mizos are about the lockdown.
Compare this to other places in India and if the images and videos we saw were genuine, then those places have a lot to learn from us. People were out on the streets celebrating and dancing, while others were beating up the police who were merely trying to enforce the lockdown. In fact my next post will be about this, about how Mizoram can set an example for other Indian states. Do read it tomorrow.
I know some of you may have questions like, "It's well and good that the lockdown is in effect, but what about those people who really need to go outside to buy food and medicines?" Don't worry about that, all that is taken care of by the Local Task Force of each locality, which I will write about in my next upcoming post.
And so here is to the people of Mizoram for being responsible enough to know what is good for us, even if it means being confined inside for a few more days. Let's keep fighting this together, and always obey what people from the medical profession are telling us to do. Bye for now, cheers.