Responding to PM's call, Odisha lights diyas at 9 pm

Bhubaneswar, Apr 5 (PTI) People across Odisha expressed solidarity with the countrys battle against COVID- 19 by lighting earthen lamps and candles at 9 PM on Sunday in an overwhelming response to the call given by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Odisha Governor Ganeshi Lal was among the host of dignitaries who joined the initiative aimed at enhancing awareness among the people about the deadly coronavirus which has claimed many lives in the country.

The governor along with his family members was seen lighting diyas in front of the Raj Bhavan with electric lights in the building switched off.

Similarly, state minister Raghunandan Das and Rajya Sabha MP Sasmit Patra also lit lamps and candles outside their houses.

'This symbolises our resolve to remove the darkness of corona,' Patra said.

In the state capital Bhubaneswar, most of the houses put out lights at 9 PM and lit diyas and candles on their balconies and near the main doors.

People belonging to different spheres of life including police personnel were also seen switching on the flashlight of their mobile phones for nine minutes from 9 pm.

Similar reports were received from other parts of the state including Cuttack, Berhampur, Sambalpur, Balasore, Puri, Rourkela, Dhenkanal, Angul, Baripada and Bhadrak.

No report of any power issue was received from anywhere in the state.

The Odisha Government had issued an advisory asking people to maintain the stability of the grid system by keeping electrical appliances such fan, refrigerator, TV, air conditioner, computer and lift on.

Earlier in the day, Chief Secretary Asit Tripathy said lights in essential services such as hospitals, police, municipalities and public utilities should remain switched on.

Street lights will also remain switched on. PTI SKN NN NN