India village orders people to switch off TV, phones and talk instead


(Representational) COVID had made children dependent on screens when online classes became the only means of education.—  Chetasi Kane/Connected Learning
(Representational) COVID had made children dependent on screens when online classes became the only means of education.—  Chetasi Kane/Connected Learning

A village in India has decided to get rid of two modern addictions — TV and the internet — by reducing the use of both by a couple of hours every day. 

The Maharashtra village sounds a siren at 7 pm in the evening warning residents to switch off their television sets and mobile phones.

Vadgaon village in Sangli district rings the final siren again at 8.30 pm. 

The two instruments of “addiction” can be switched on when the village council sounds the siren again at 8.30 pm.

Vijay Mohite, president of the village council, according to the BBC Hindi, said that the decision on made on the Independence day of the country. 

The village inhabits nearly 3,000 people, who are mostly farmers and mill workers.

Mohite said COVID had made children dependent on screens when online classes became the only means of education. Now that children have returned to school, their screen-time should reduce, Mohite believes.

He said that children and adults were not talking to each other enough because younger people went off to either play or use mobile phones after school.

A mother from the village told BBC Hindi that she faced difficulties “supervising her children” because they would be watching TV or using the phone.

She said that with the new regulation, her husband can easily help the kids with homework while she works in the kitchen.

However, what BBC called “digital detox” was not easy to execute as many people initially did not agree and even mocked the idea.

In the beginning, implementation was difficult too as council staff had to go home to home and urge people to follow.



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