Two days after lockdown norms were eased from June 5, Mumbaikars had their first Sunday out in large numbers to walk, jog and exercise after remaining indoors for nearly 80 days as per Coronavirus news.
Crowds of walkers and joggers were witnessed at popular public places like Marine Drive, Bandra Bandstand, Juhu, Powai Lake promenade, various beaches, several public grounds and gardens, or open spaces in the suburban housing complexes.
This is the first time after nearly three months that Mumbaikars wearing masks trooped out to soak in the sun and socialise a bit while maintaining physical distancing norms.
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“Remaining shut at home for so long, stepping out only for essential purchases…. it was taking a toll on my physical and mental health. Now, it feels pleasant to see people around,” said Powai resident P.K. Menon, taking a vigorous walk opposite the Powai Lake.
In suburban areas like Kandivali and Powai, a few masked teenagers were seen cycling – an activity which has been specifically permitted in the lockdown easing as it automatically ensures physical distancing.
Merchant navy sailor Suresh Bhaskaran came out to cycle with his daughter in Thane along with many others, enjoying the physical activity.
However, the crowds caught the eyes of the social media with mixed reactions ranging from supportive to caustic and critical as the Covid-19 pandemic continues to be on a rampage in Mumbai and Maharashtra.
From Monday, more avenues shall be eased up with the starting of government and private offices, the latter with 10 percent staff, nearly half the shops and commercial establishments will open applying the odd-even dates norm but with stringent conditions.
The authorities will resume partial BEST and ST bus services permitting travel within divisions in the state, though Mumbai’s lifeline, the suburban trains, is to remain shut.
On Saturday, Maharashtra recorded 120 deaths, taking the total fatalities to 2,969 – including 1,577 in Mumbai, while the infected patients are 82,968, out of which 47,354 are from the country’s commercial capital alone. (IANS)