Scene 1: A police officer from Bengaluru was seemingly narrating the story of the pandemic while two other officers were seen dancing with colourful 'corona' helmets.
Scene 2: As a man rode his bike through them, two police officers who were wearing virus-shaped helmets stopped him while the narrator explained how the irresponsible man could contract the virus as he roamed around the city. The helmeted men even hopped onto his bike in a symbolic representation of how easily he could get infected. PS: The icing on the cake was the background music.
With PM Modi imposing a 21-day coronavirus lockdown, you probably can't do anything but stay quarantined in your homes. But a few have defied the lockdown without understanding the gravity of the situation. What awaited some of them were not lathi charges, but innovative interventions to create awareness sans violence.
While some police officials gave a free exercise session to lockdown violators by asking them to perform squats by holding their ears, many states put their thinking caps on and came up with novel ideas or 'pun'ishments to make motorists understand the importance of the lockdown.
A Chennai cop grabbed worldwide attention after his "corona helmet" went viral across social media. With spikes that resemble the virus, an armour and mace, made out of nothing but some old school glue, paint and newspapers, the look was absolutely terrifying. (But so is the virus)
In another instance, cops were seen requesting motorists with folded hands not to venture out unnecessarily. If that's not enough, some police officials also asked them to recite slogans. "We won't venture out without valid reasons, we request you not to come out either," said the violators as they were made to do ten sit-ups.
Giving tough competition to TN, Andhra cops amped up their game by shooing lockdown violators back into their homes with a clever strategy. By bringing them face to face with Yamraj! Yes, they actually brought a man dressed up like Yamaraj, the God of death or the grim reaper, to show motorists what can happen if they come out on the road!
Kerala's police officials also joined the bandwagon to create awareness among the public. Remember when the song Jimikki Kammal became a viral hit and everyone used it for almost everything? In a similar fashion, by shaking a leg to the hit song Kalakkatha from the film Ayyappanum Koshiyum, the Kerala Police demonstrated how to wash hands properly. It was only a matter of time before this too became an internet sensation.
In Chhattisgarh, police officer Abhinav Upadhyay was heard singing his own version of the famous song Ek Pyaar Ka Nagma Hai from the movie Shor. He did so while standing in the residential area of Civil Lines in Bilaspur.
Similar videos emerged from Bengaluru and Maharashtra as well. The Kolkata Police and Telangana Police reached out to specific audiences on hand-washing and explained the need for such a small and easy practice at this crucial time.
In Odisha too, there was no punishment. Instead, motorists flouting lockdown rules were made to hold placards that said they were "selfish" and didn't care about the welfare of society.
In Bihar, police officials went a step ahead and garlanded people who violated guidelines.
Truly novel. What else do we say in such times!