PM Narendra Modi’s message at 9 am yesterday, asking citizens of India to light up diyas, candles or mobile torchlights on April 5th at 9 pm as a sign of unity, has received sharp criticism from the Congress leaders.
PM Modi’s 9 am video-message on April 3rd
In an 11-minute video message on April 3rd, Modi said:
“This Sunday, on the 5th of April, we must all together, challenge the darkness spread by the corona crisis, introducing it to the power of light. We must awaken the superpower of 130 crore Indians…On the 5th of April, on Sunday, I want 9 minutes from all you, at 9 pm, turn off all the lights in your homes, stand at your doors or in your homes, stand at your doors or in your balconies, and light candles or diyas, torches or mobile flashlights for 9 minutes.”
Congress Leaders criticize the move
Many Congress members criticized PM Modi for not speaking about critical issues regarding the COVID-19 topic.
In a tweet, Shashi Tharoor said:
“listened to the Pradhan Showman. Nothing about how to ease people’s pain, their burdens, their financial anxieties. No vision of the future or sharing the issues he is weighing in deciding about the post-lockdown. Just a feel-good moment curated by India’s Photo-Op PrimeMinister!”
Tharoor’s counterpart P Chidambaram was also of the same opinion. He said that, although “symbolism” is important, the more important issues that had to be addressed were regarding the steps to arrest the economic slide and production of a method of livelihood to the poor.
Congress spokesperson Pawan Khera also raised concerns about the country’s slow testing pace of the virus. He said that the country was expecting answers to various issues around the country from the PM.
However, the BJP leaders were adamant that the PM’s message was pinpoint, and have already started spreading the awareness of lighting diyas on Sunday to their workers and the general public.