The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in partnership with UNICEF hosted an interactive session for representatives of All India Radio, Private FMs and community radio stations on the need to create awareness about the importance of following COVID Appropriate Behaviour (CAB) during the upcoming festival season. The session was attended by around 150 radio representatives involved in programming and presentation of radio programs from across India. These radio stations have a massive reach and wide spectrum of audience—from those residing in urban areas to those in rural or remote regions of the country.
The session was addressed by Shri Lav Agarwal, Joint Secretary, MoHFW. In his keynote address, Shri Agarwal spoke about the importance of the medium in delivering public interest messages. He said that India has successfully controlled COVID-19 cases in record time by ramping up its test-track-treat and vaccination strategy. He also appreciated peoples’ participation in the world’s largest vaccination program.
However, he cautioned that though COVID-19 cases are reducing across India, the virus is still around and any complacency at this stage can lead to yet another surge. “The country will soon be reaching a historic landmark of 100 crore vaccination. While victory over virus is in sight, we cannot let this hard- earned victory slip from our hands due to COVID-fatigue. So, I urge people not to let their guard down during the upcoming festive season”, said Shri Agarwal. He added that festivals are about the victory of good over evil. We also need to fight the evil of COVID pandemic by maintaining COVID Appropriate Behavior.
He asked all the participants to amplify public interest messages such as importance of both the doses of vaccines, and the need to follow Covid Protocols during festivals in country’s collective fight against virus. In his address he encouraged participants to produce innovative programs by engaging experts as well as community.
Senior officials of the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Ministry of I&B, and UNICEF also attended the session.