Mangaluru, March 31: When LockDown is meant to minimize activity and ensure social distancing, it was shocking to see the rush in every market and shops in Dakshina Kannada district.
After three days of complete lockdown, elected representatives in Dakshina Kannada district had decided to ease the LockDown from morning till 3 pm on Tuesday.
No sooner did the administration ease the Lockdown, than the people indulged in panic buying. The situation was the same in places like Mangaluru, Bantwal, Belthangady, Moodbidri, Ujire, Sullia, Vitla, Uppinangady. Everywhere the shops were packed with the mob.
“Sir we are waiting since morning. It is four hours since we are waiting. Everybody comes with a big list and we are unable to get what we want. It is a mad rush here,” said Mr. Sushrutha who had come to purchase at the market near Puttur.
A long queue of vehicles could be seen on both sides of the road.
In Mangaluru, the central market was bustling with activity. This was the best example of how the Lockdown was sidelined by people. A mike announcement continued to shout about the need for social distancing. But it hardly mattered for the people.
“I took a big round in my car to purchase some vegetables and groceries. But everywhere it was a long queue. I preferred to return without purchasing anything. I will manage with the things that I have,” Vishwanath P of Kankanady said.
“The officials could have made arrangements to provide supplies at the doorsteps to make Lockdown success. Otherwise, at least they could keep the shops open every day for 2-3 hours. This would ensure that people are not in a panic. Once people are sure that the shop is open every day, they will purchase only the things that are needed. There will not be any queue also. Naturally, social distancing would be achieved. Now in DK, there was complete lockdown for three days and now today it was chaos. What if there was some COVID-19 patient in the mob?” Rudra, a resident of Yeyyadi questions.
When it comes to the reason for confusion, many point at the lack of coordination between the officials and elected representatives.
Many feel that the elected representatives have failed to understand the situation and implement the LockDown.
“In Uttara Kannada and Udupi district the officials are given free hand. But in Dakshina Kannada there seems to be a lack of coordination between officials and political leaders,” a businessman who did not want to be identified said.
People are ready to be at home during Lockdown. The only thing they want is the assurance that their daily needs would not be affected. Once officials ensure this, Lockdown would come into force in true spirit.