Cutting down on outings

Cutting down on outings

Life in the happening City has somewhat come to a standstill with the spread of swine flu. With an increasing number of cases being reported everyday, the number of people going to malls, theatres, cafes and every other public place has reduced to a large extent. Metrolife spoke to a few people in the City to find out the magnitude of this
epidemic, and the impact it has had on their lives.

Fear of getting the flu has completely affected the life of Taruna, an engineering student. “I used to travel by the BMTC bus to college but now I have started going by bike as it is much safer. Plus, malls, multiplexes and restaurants are a big no to me. When it comes to food, it’s only packaged food. Even the college canteen is alright with me, as it seems much safer that most restaurants at least,” she laughs.

Taruna has been avoiding crowded places as much as she can. “I am a CAT aspirant and our mock CAT exams are held at different software companies. I am apprehensive even about going to a centre to give an important exam in a room with 20 other people. So you can imagine what an impact it has had on my life.” While travelling in autos, Taruna
ensures that she wears a mask. “I have given up eating my favourite pani puri too,” she jokes.

“People are extremely cautious and most of them are wearing masks,” observes Vinutha, who is also scared to use the public transport for commuting. “I have completely stopped going to malls and public places as shopping can wait, but immune system can’t,” she laughs. “If so many people can be diagnosed with swine flu, why not you and me?” she asks. Vinutha has not been eating out as well. “Mothers now have a reason to grin,” she smiles.

But Nandeesh M R, General Manager, Garuda Mall assures that proper precautions have been taken. “Swine flu hasn’t really affected the number of people visiting the mall,” he informs. “Besides, we do tell people to stay at home if they have fever.” Nandeesh says that the mall is planning to introduce a machine to check the temperatures of the visitors in the coming days.
 
Ajay Chitharanjan, another youngster has been leading a normal life.

But he feels that the epidemic will surely affect his routine in the weeks to come. “I watched a movie in a theatre last week. And almost every person present was wearing a mask or had covered his or her face with a handkerchief. I was the only one without a mask. I got so scared that I came back home at 1 am and took a shower,” he notes.

Initially, Ajay felt that swine flu was merely a rumour to create unwanted panic. “But the first death that happened at BTM Layout was merely two crosses away from my house. It was then that I started taking it more seriously.” Ajay doesn’t mind going to public places. “But I do take my own precautions. For instance, if the place is too crowded, I try not to go too close to people or shake hands with strangers.” He adds, “I have been taking homeopathic tablets and consuming turmeric and milk as well.”

According to Satish Kumar, General Manager of PVR Cinemas, the multiplex is taking adequate precautions so the public need not worry. “We sanitize the theatre after every show, and even provide masks and hand sanitizers to the people.”

He adds, “Our teams clean the entire multiplex regularly, and we also have air blowers in the rest-rooms for proper ventilation.”

Satish feels that there has been no change in the number of people coming to watch movies.

“But not many children have been coming. There has been no panic otherwise. In fact, all the new movies are running houseful,” he notes.

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