As many as 60 mild to moderate coronavirus patients in Karnataka's Ballari district voluntarily stood up for the national anthem during the 74th Independence Day celebrations at their hospital on Saturday, an official said.
"The patients did not know that Independence Day was being celebrated. It was impromptu, yet they all stood up for the national anthem," Ballari Deputy Commissioner S.S. Nakul told IANS.
The incident occurred in Ballari town's Trauma Care Hospital which has been designated as a Covid hospital.
He said the doctors and nurses decided to celebrate the Independence Day in a small way by playing the national anthem without the knowledge of the patients.
"Surprisingly, all the patients slowly started to stand up as the national anthem was being played," said Nakul.
Though some of the patients were a little unwell, they still stood to honour the anthem.
"Even though some patients had tiredness, a little fever and some breathing difficulty, they still chose to stand up," said a doctor, who was one of the organisers.
Incidentally, none of the 60 patients was on the bed when the anthem was played and everyone stood up to pay their respect to the nation.
To celebrate the occasion, the doctors distributed fruits to the patients.
Nakul shared a video of the celebration in which the patients were seen standing beside their beds, some wearing masks, while a woman was seen folding her hands with reverence as another even saluted.
The medical staff shot the video from outside the treatment room through a transparent partition.
On Friday, Ballair registered 608 more Covid positive cases, raising the district tally to 13,048, out of which 5,952 are active while the toll rose to 148.
Meanwhile, as part of the Independence Day celebrations, Nakul replaced 20-year-old government vehicles of the district health department with brand new ones.
"We managed to replace 27 vehicles which were 20 years old. The new vehicles are for the health and women and child welfare departments," he added.
Nakul and others flagged off the fleet of vehicles following the flag hoisting ceremony.