Cops, artistes and a village head - all combating corona through crooning in UP

Each song tends to sensitize people about hand washing, social distancing, covering of mouth and nose with mask and remaining indoor to ward off the deadly virus.
For representational purposes
For representational purposes

LUCKNOW: In many pockets of Uttar Pradesh, villagers, professional crooners or even cops, all have found novel ways to fight novel coronavirus and music is one of them. While Bhojpuri jingles are doing rounds in far eastern pockets of the state with singers trying their skills in evoking awareness about the pandemic, an young and educated woman village head of Maal Malihabad on the outskirts of Lucknow has created her own band to sensitize people during the lockdown.

Meanwhile, cops on duty are also on a song while ensuring enforcement of lockdown. Calling for divine intervention, Rakesh Srivastava, a Gorakhpur-based artiste invokes mother Goddess as: “Lugwa bhayilba laachar... maiyaa baaru ho (people are helpless, where are you, goddess).” The popular number: “Hello Kaun, Coronavirus!” by a singer couple – Khushboo and Praveen Uttam - is gaining popularity and breaking the monotony during the ongoing hard time.

While Khesari Lal’s ‘Cheen se aayil coronavirus’ (coronavirus has come from China) is doing rounds, “Ikkees din ke lackdaun mein ghar mein rahiya band... karona bhagiyen sarau” (corona will have to recede in 21–day lockdown) by Azamgarh’s Jalim Jiyara is not behind.

Each song tends to sensitize people about hand washing, social distancing, covering of mouth and nose with mask and remaining indoor to ward off the deadly virus.

Similarly, the jingle - ‘Jan jan curfew lagai corona tohkey jayke padi (People will strictly adhere to the lockdown, hence you will have to leave, corona) - created and composed by 49-year-old Akshay Mishra, a cop who also lent his voice is turning out to be much a fame on the roads of Gorakhpur.

Mishra, who hails from Ballia, has been holding the fort of Railway chowky as incharge. He has been in Gorakhpur for the last four years. During this lockdown, besides ensuring strict adherence to the lockdown norms by the netizens, Mishra takes to a hand held mike and is out on the road these days with his colleagues. He sings his way to people’s hearts and minds to sensitize them about following the lock down while checking everyone who is moving out for emergency work.

He even sings while sitting inside the tent which serves as a temporary shelter for policemen deployed to enforce the lockdown.

Elsewhere,  a young and educated village head of Mall Malihabad, the mango belt on outskirts of state capital Lucknow, has created a band of her own and roams around from village to village to make people aware of the importance of lockdown, social distancing and sanitization during the present testing times.

“...agar corona se bachna, bachaana hai, to ghar ke baher nahi aana hai, gamcha se mooh dhak ke hi bahar aana hai ... (to save oneself and others from corona stay indoors and wrap a ‘gamcha’ on your face while going out ..),”— croons Shweta Singh, the village head. The song has been penned by her. She is
accompanied by dhol and cymbal players to send across her message.

With a population of over 2,000, village Maal Malihabad is equipped with internet as it had gone digital a couple of years ago when Shweta, an MCA degree holder, took over as village head.

She feels that music is one way of drawing attention and it was coming handy in her village as well. About the migrants in her village, Shweta says seven of them had returned after the lockdown and all were quarantined and under observation at special centre set by her.

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