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Vellore police choose music over lathis to create COVID-19 awareness

DGP J.K. Tripathy had asked his personnel not to use force or lathis to enforce the lockdown

Keeping aside the lathis, the Vellore police have taken musical instruments like French Horn, Clarinets and drums to create awareness about COVID-19 and the importance of following lockdown norms in curbing the spread of the virus.

The Tamil Nadu police band has been playing music at important junctions in the district to draw attention of the people, before speaking on the do’s and don’ts.

As DGP J.K. Tripathy had asked his personnel not to use force or lathis to enforce the lockdown, the department has been creating awareness and taking action against repeat violators. In Vellore district, S. Selvakumar, SP, roped in the Tamil Nadu police band, Vellore unit which has a total of 26 members. The band started creating awareness from May 11.

“We go to important junctions in different police station limits with the brass, reed and rhythm instruments including French Horn, Slide Trombone, Clarinets, Drums and cymbals. We start playing the march past music and everyone stops to look at us,” said R. Mahesh, a Grade 1 police constable, who is part of the unit. He plays the clarinet. He joined the band in 2010.

The band plays the music for ten minutes, before the Inspector or Sub-Inspector from the respective station starts giving awareness messages. “They tell people to maintain personal distance, wear masks and not to venture out necessarily. We also educate them on the action that can be taken against them if they violate the lockdown rules,” he added.

The band starts work around 6 a.m. and it goes on till around 10 a.m. when shops are open. “In this second wave of COVID-19, police has assumed the role of a mass awareness creator also. We also follow policies which reduces confrontation with public while enforcing lockdown. Enforcement is strict, but equally aligned towards creating awareness on staying home, and taking steps which automatically demotivated people from wandering around,” said Vellore ASP Albert John.

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