PM Modi to launch Covid-19 awareness campaign today

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will launch an awareness campaign on Thursday to promote Covid-19 apropriate behaviour ahead of the upcoming festival and winter season as well as the opening up of the economy.

The Union Cabinet on Wednesday gave nod to the campaign, which will be launched to encourage people’s participation (Jan Andolan) and will be a “low cost high intensity” affair aimed at delivering messages of mask wearing, physical distancing and hand hygiene.

“Mask, social distancing and washing hands are the only weapons to remain safe, in the absence of a Covid-19 vaccine,” information and broadcasting minister Prakash Javadekar said. To achieve a multiplier effect, the campaign will involve those working in anganwadis, health sector and around 500 influencers from sports, culture and the film industry. Communication touch-points such as markets, railway stations, anganwadi Centres will be utilized for the campaign.

“A Covid-19 pledge will be taken by all. A concerted action plan will be implemented by central ministries and state and UT departments,” said an official statement, adding there would be region-specific targeted communication in high case-load districts.

The government has prepared slides – with photos of PM Modi — to be used both physical and online. The tagline of these slides will be “no carelessness until there is a cure” and they will contain messages such as “stay protected from corona”, “wear your mask properly” and “maintain safe distance” with visual representation.

Officials said the campaign will be conducted in various languages across the length and breadth of the country. Bodies such as the Confederation of Indian Industry and Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry may also be encouraged to participate while Doordarshan has already initiated a Mask Up India campaign, it is learnt.

Dissemination throughout the country using all media platforms, banners and posters at public places, involving frontline workers and targeting beneficiaries of government schemes, will be part of the plan, the official statement said. Running mobile vans for awareness generation, audio messages and seeking support of Local Cable Operators for running Covid-19 messages, will be the other dimensions of the campaign.

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