New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday, in an 8 PM address to the nation, announced further extension of the ongoing nationwide lockdown, which is currently in its third phase, and is scheduled to end on May 17. Also Read - Economic Package Will Focus on Land, Labour, Liquidity And Laws: Top 10 Quotes From PM Modi’s Speech
‘Lockdown 4.0,’ as its being called, is expected to be much less severe than the first three phases, including the current one, and details regarding it will be announced before May 18, which will be day one of the fourth phase of the lockdown. Also Read - Lockdown 4.0 Confirmed: Going by PM Modi's Hints, Here is How it May Look Like
In today’s address to the nation, which was his fifth on the issue of the COVID-19 pandemic, the PM also announced a Rs 20 lakh crore economic package, which will be 10% of the country’s GDP. Also Read - 'Vocal For Our Local': PM Modi's Mantra to Make Local Brands Global
All in all, PM Modi’s speech tonight lasted for over half an hour. In fact, here is the respective duration of all five speeches by the Prime Minister thus far:
(1.) ‘Janata Curfew’ Announcement (28:54): On March 19, PM Modi announced the ‘Janata Curfew’ for March 22, in what was seen as a mock drill to prepare the citizens for a longer lockdown in future. On the ‘Janata Curfew’ day, people were to stay indoors from 7 AM-9 PM and at 5PM, come in their balconies and clap and clang utensils for five minutes to thank frontline COVID-19 warriors.
(2.) First Lockdown (29:01): On March 24, two days after ‘Janata Curfew,’ in yet another customary 8 PM speech, the Prime Minister announced a nationwide lockdown, which, he said, will go on for three weeks and end on April 14. The sudden announcement led to panic buying in markets.
(3.) ‘Light a Lamp’ Announcement (11:34): On April 3, in the shortest of his five speeches, and, in a departure from his customary late evening slot, Modi, in a 9 AM video address to the nation through his Twitter account, urged people to switch off all lights of their houses at 9 PM on April 5, and light diyas (lamps) and candles, for 10 minutes, in a bid to show that the nation is united in this hour of crisis.
(4.) Second Lockdown (21:49): On April 14, the last day of lockdown 1.0, the Prime Minister, this time addressing the nation at 10 AM, announced that the lockdown was being extended for 19 more days, till May 3.
(5.) Fourth Lockdown (34:05): In the latest, as well as the longest of his five addresses, Modi, on May 12, returned to his customary 8 PM slot, and announced lockdown 4.0. Stressing on the need for India to become ‘self-reliant,’ he also announced an economic package worth Rs 20 lakh crore.