Coronavirus has struck fear in the hearts of people, who are panicking at this pandemic. In efforts to curb the spread of Covid-19, people are asked to stay indoors and avoid unnecessary trips to the streets. But not everyone has the luxury of staying in isolation, for which reason alone the entire nation stood in solidarity on Sunday (Janata Curfew) to applaud the brave hearts who go out there in service of the people despite the risks. But is that all they deserve, a few minutes of applause?
The act of people cheering and supporting the service officials, first responders, doctors, nurses, paramedics, municipal staff, armed forces, and others, was an inspiring display of gratitude. Shouldn't these heroes be welcomed home with a similar gesture or at the very least extend the courtesy of being a good neighbor? The hypocrisy of some "vigilante" residents is appalling as instances of hostile treatment towards some service officials have come to light.
Indigo staff ostracised
As the entire nation is on lockdown, people are staying indoors to stay safe from the virus. But the airlines' staff, as a part of the service industry, continues its services, for which reason the air-hosts and air-hostesses are asked to report to duty. In an unfortunate and shocking incident, an Indigo staff was treated with utmost disrespect as she shared her ordeal in a video that has since gone viral on social media.
An Indigo staff in distress is seen crying in the video after facing harassment from some vigilantes in her residential society. She says in the video that some people are spreading rumours that the Indigo employee is suffering from coronavirus due to her travel history. In her absence, the unidentified people from the society are harassing her mother, refusing to sell anything saying she might have contracted coronavirus from her daughter.
The employee also said that other crew members are also facing a similar kind of hostile treatment for being a part of the service industry. You can watch the video below:
THIS- Terrible!— Zeba Warsi (@Zebaism) March 24, 2020
Listen- this @IndiGo6E employee
is crying due to the harassment faced by her by people in her residential area
Yesterday, Indigo had put out a statement on this
It’s shameful! Stop targeting these brave professionals#Coronavirusindiapic.twitter.com/go64Ct9xFp
In response to the growing incidents of similar nature, Indigo issued a statement:
"There are some instances when our employees have been ostracized from their communities as a result of their line of duty and travel history. We have taken every possible precaution for our crew to be protected from infection during their duties. We have adequate protocols for self-quarantine in place in case its required."
Air India staff face similar scrutiny
Indigo staff aren't alone in this ordeal. Recently, Air India staff was also being ostracised by these so-called vigilante welfare organizations and obstructing the crew from doing their duties due to their travel history.
"These vigilantes have conveniently forgotten that many a spouse, parent, sibling, child and near and dear ones have been brought home safe and secure from affected countries thanks to the heroic efforts of these Air India crew," the national carrier said in a statement.
How nation responds?
As a nation, this kind of hypocritical behavior is uncalled for. Even though many people are coming out in support of distressed airline staff, the ground reality is far worse. These employees must go through such horrors first hand and no amount of virtual support can be justified unless stern action is taken. A social media outburst is what is needed to push for action against such outrageous behavior.
Here's how the social media is buzzing with the response towards the ostracising of airlines staff:
Shameful. We all owe an apology to this brave woman.— Abhisar Sharma (@abhisar_sharma) March 24, 2020
After Air India, IndiGo also reported instances of its employees being targeted by their communities as a result of their "line of duty and travel history".— Knotty Commander (@KnottyCommander) March 24, 2020
Well done guys. This is the test of your true character & no guesses as to who are the spineless wimps. ???
Doctors, medical staff, flight crews being assaulted/shunned. Aren't these the people we supposedly came together to thank on Sunday? Govt needs to eschew its tokenism, orders,monologues and talk to citizens, answer questions on how to deal with these unprecedented times. https://t.co/DoeeqzApzK— Suhasini Haidar (@suhasinih) March 24, 2020
The kind of messages and tweets I’m seeing from the service industry and the medical industry are heartbreaking. They are facing so much stigmatisation and neglect. We need to applaud them not treat them this way. I’m so ashamed of the People who are doing this.— Sonam K Ahuja (@sonamakapoor) March 24, 2020
In these trying times, when the entire world is facing a bigger threat from Covid-19, moral policing must be practiced more than preaching. If on one side we are standing in solidarity to thank the service officials who are risking their lives just by being out there, on the other side they are being harassed for that very service we claim to be thankful for. There's no place for hypocrisy and such hostile behavior. If we are not lending a helping hand towards those in need, let's not be the unnecessary nuisance obstructing the brave hearts of our country from their service. Be better.