Tuesday, 18 August 2020

Lockdown in Bhutan

 It's been  one week since Bhutan underwent nation wide lockdown as one of the returnee from middle East testef positive for COVID-19 yet again after finishing the quarantine period for one month. The government lead by the prime minister who is a doctor and surgeon himself with His majesty the king's guidance traced and tested around 200+ of her first contact and and 300+ secondary contacts which all came out negative. That was a huge relief, but only the beginning of another sad wave of news which was to unfold as the number of lockdown days increased.

On the third day of Lockdown, Phuntsholing RCCO mini dry pot became the hotspot of detection and the presence of COVID-19 outside the mandatory quarantine for the first time in the country. Immediately the government tagged and alerted  Phuntsholing as the red zone and presence of community transmission in the area. The government was able to trace, track and test not only the primary and secondary contacts but also the whole region of Phuntsholing in which out of about 4000+ samples, 4 came positive.  The government also announced nationwide urging people to come forward who have visited Phuntsholing on and after the first August to get tested which proved timely and affective as another two positive cases are being detected, only this time at different place - Paro. So looking at the unfolding of all these, I feel lockdown was very timely and that we as a citizen can only comply with the government's directives. The best we can do is to stay home strictly and to monitor ourselves of the symptoms if any. Let's not betray the trust entrusted in us by the godly King and the government. Together we can!

Apart from the COVID-19, let's also talk about the movies, the Bhutanese movies. Here again it's the concern of his majesty on his subjects who have commanded to show the movies in TV so that people don't get bored during lockdown. Not just this and the Bhutanese people, his majesty is also concerned about the stray dogs who might go wild without food and create problems in the community during lockdown. The royal Bhutan Army has initiated to feed the stray dogs across the country. What better can we expect during such tough times? May the dieties and Lha choechong sungma keep his majesty safe  and sound at such and all times. May we get through this pandemic soon.

Coming back to movies, till 12th standard, we used to watch movies being screened at the school's multi purpose hall. Those days, the producers of the movies would travel across the country to show their movies in schools and it would cost Nu 20 per movie. But I since left for college, English movies and the series took their turn to pass my leisure time because of easy availability on the campus. It's almost fifteen long years since I watched Bhutanese movies which I feel is not fair. We gotta support our own productions and our own people right? After getting employed, it only worsens to be frank. Hardly is there time for leisure such as this to make time for movies. 

A good friend of mine who never fails to watch Bhutanese produced movies once recommended me to watch this movie called 'Pot of Gold' ( གསེར་རྫམ་གང་།) which he said bagged many national awards. I was determined to watch it and make time with family for locally produced movies as well but could never make it. Thanks to BBS and the Bank of Bhutan, it was aired on television and in fact it was worth watching it. (By the way I have not watched any other movies aired by BBS since lockdown). The movie has strong message with artful dialogues that keeps you aughing throughout. It's aptly reviewed it at here: https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=199577918254086&id=102969014581644. 

Apart from all these, I personally feel Lockdown is a good time for your own self, to go inward and find your true self. You can pray, you can meditate, exercise, read and reflect upon your self. It's best time to engage with your family and gave quality family time. Since when do we get such time in one's life? Although on the other hand, it's like putting brake on the economy, business and the very engine of growth for a country as a whole. I spend most of my time in trying to bring my mind home with some prayers. We can never have such a time, sorhubk positively, the good sides of this lockdown and  make best use of it folks. It's such a milestone in our generation where we can serve the Tsa-wa sum by just staying at home! 

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