The coronavirus pandemic has been doubling its score these days. With the population of approximately 133 billion citizens observing a nationwide lockdown for 21 days, the health, sanitation and security department has been on its toes, saving the world like our real heroes.
After the thunderous clapping activity that almost every Indian proudly took part in, for thanking the doctors, nurses, police and others who have to battle the virus on the front lines, our PM Narendra Modi announced another activity to light up diyas or candles on April 5, 2020, at 9 pm for 9 minutes. This activity was supposed to be done by switching off all the lights of our homes and also shutting all the doors and windows.
As a youth of the nation who stays updated about the whereabouts in the country, I found myself wondering about the reason behind the activity and the outcome of this. Especially when hundreds of labourers and homeless people are stranded without proper food and shelter, let alone sanitation.
When the PM addressed the nation with his ‘special message’, a lot of citizens questioned his decision and why he chose to speak about this over the other issues that were more important to look upon. However, the others fully supported him in this and so did my parents. Some even circulated WhatsApp messages that this 9-9 activity had something to do with numerology and was also affiliated to astrology.
However, after thorough research, reading numerous articles and fact-checking, I came to the conclusion that this was stupid, especially when educating some dudes who pelt stones at doctors was more important than this. The day arrived, my parents and my neighbours extremely excited about it, started turning off lights five minutes prior to the event.
And when I did decide to step out of the house to be a part of the event, without any choice, I was stunned. The entire building was dark with people standing, holding a diya/candle in their hand. It looked as if the stars had come down on earth. The environment outside was calm with people silently praying for this to pass.
Everything looked surreal and suddenly it strikes me that maybe we lit a diya for the ones struggling with the virus,
maybe we lit a diya to stand in solidarity with our saviours,
maybe we lit a diya for those who failed to make it to the end of the tunnel with us,
maybe we lit one for there’s hope,
maybe we lit one for we’re in this together,
and one for this isn’t the end, and this shall pass too.