I apologize for taking harsh steps, but lockdown necessary: Modi
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday morning addressed the nation through his radio show Mann ki Baat. Modi addressed the ongoing coronavirus outbreak and apologized for taking "harsh steps" by imposing the 21-day lockdown. The apology comes as migrant workers in many states suffered under the lockdown. Meanwhile, the COVID-19 death toll on Sunday rose to 27. Here are more updates.
'Battle against COVID-19 tough; required such harsh decisions'
On Mann ki Baat, PM Modi said, "I apologize for taking these harsh steps which have caused difficulties in your lives, especially the poor people. I know some of you would also be angry with me." He added, "The battle against COVID-19 is a tough one and it did require such harsh decisions. It is important to keep the people of India safe."
'If you don't follow lockdown, protecting ourselves becomes difficult'
Modi said, "I understand that no one wants to break rules deliberately, but there are some people who are doing so. To them, I will say that if they don't follow this lockdown, it will be difficult to protect ourselves from the danger of coronavirus."
Modi spoke to COVID-19 patients who recovered
On the show, Modi spoke to patients who recovered from COVID-19. An IT professional, Ram Gampa Teja, shared his experience with the disease and said that people should not fear being quarantined. "It's not a jail," Teja told Modi. He said he was scared after his diagnosis at first, however, the medical staff helped him. Teja stressed on the importance of maintaining hygienic precautions.
Modi also spoke to patient who infected six family members
Modi also spoke to COVID-19 survivor Ashok Kapoor, who infected six of his family members after returning from Italy. Kapoor said the doctors were supportive during quarantine and the family is now "fit and fine." Wishing for the longevity of Kapoor's family, Modi added, "As he said, by not panicking, taking the right steps on time and contacting doctors, we can defeat this epidemic."
Modi then spoke to doctors about patients they treat
Speaking to Modi on the show, Dr. Nitesh Gupta said that since patients are often scared when they approach medical professionals, they have to act as counselors, too. Dr. Gupta said that even people with mild symptoms fear COVID-19 after reading about the deaths abroad. He said they then assure the patients that they will recover, just as they would from a common cold.
7 out of 16 Pune patients discharged: Doctor tells Modi
Modi was then joined by Dr. Borse from Pune. Dr. Borse said that the 16 people who were tested positive for COVID-19 at the civic-run Naidu Hospital, were treated by them. Seven people have since recovered and have been discharged. He said the young are also getting infected with the coronavirus, however, they only display mild symptoms.
'I salute every nurse today'
Praising healthcare workers, Modi said, "Acharya Charak had said that one who serves patients without desiring any material gain, is the best doctor. I salute every nurse today, you all are working with incomparable dedication." Addressing reports of people under home quarantine facing harassment, Modi said, "We need to be sensitive and understanding. Increase social distancing but reduce emotional distancing."