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Young politicos using social media to connect with public during Covid-19 lockdown

Young politicos using social media to connect with public during Covid-19 lockdown
From learning to make rotis to issuing appeals to their constituents to stop community hookah sessions or playing cards, young politicians are using novel methods to spend their time during the 21-day coronavirus lockdown period.

With social distance being the byword, politicians are leveraging social media to stay connected with people.

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Jyotiraditya Scindia has been releasing videos to communicate with the people of Madhya Pradesh.

Scindia keeps repeatedly tweeting and reassuring the people that although he cannot meet them in person due to restrictions, he and his party workers are ready to address their problems.

Rajasthan Congress president and the deputy chief minister Sachin Pilot's hands are full. Along with chief minister Ashok Gehlot, he has to oversee the preparations to tackle the pandemic and does not have much spare time. But he does make it a point to share "valuable recommendations" on Twitter.

"Use your non-dominant hand (left hand for right handed people) for door-knobs, handles and bathroom, because it is much more difficult for you to touch your face with that hand. In Korea they widely spread this premise, and it worked," read one of his tweets.

BJP Lok Sabha member and former union minister Rajyavardhan Rathore said he has been monitoring the situation on the ground in his constituency through video and telephone chats.

"I have been releasing videos on why we cannot be complacent and how serious this virus is and how quickly it spreads. I have also released Rs 16 lakh to the collector's office to use this for feeding daily wagers and those living in shelters," Rathore said.

An Olympian and a fitness enthusiast, Rathore has also been preparing a team of volunteers across his constituency who can assist the administration in carrying out food distribution and other relief measures.

While urging youngsters to stay indoors, in a chat with cricketer Suresh Raina, Rathore gave an example of how he won a competition without any active shooting practice, and advised India's budding athletes to use this downtime in a productive manner.

Congress leader Deepender Hooda, who last week got elected unopposed to the Rajya Sabha from Haryana, communicated in his native language Haryanavi to suggest some do's and don't's to the people to stay safe from coronavirus.

In Haryana, the tradition of people belonging to 36 biradari (social groups) sharing the hookah is on since decades. He urged them to renounce this practice temporarily or have hookahs separately.

"Another of our favourite pastimes is playing cards. Please avoid for the time being," he made an appeal through Twitter.

BJP MP from Pilibhit Varun Gandhi utilises his time in addressing the problems of his constituents.

"We have to reach out to local authorities and intervene to address the issues of kirana stores closing, warehouses being closed down and deliveries being stopped," he said.

Congress spokesperson Jaiveer Shergill took to Twitter to post a video of him learning how to make 'gobi ka parantha'. He said he would learn to cook 21 dishes in the 21 days of lockdown.

"My biggest handicap is not knowing how to cook-so I have taken it upon myself to learn how to cook 21 Dishes in 21 Days starting with my favourite "Gobi Ka Parantha" & my tutor being Gopal Ji who has been our family member for past 36 years," Shergill tweeted.

Nizamabad MP Arvind Dharmapuri has been organising help for people stranded in other states. "I get calls from people that they need to be rescued or moved. I have also been catching up on films, listening to inspirational speeches and playing cricket with my kids," he said.

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