The second wave of COVID-19 that hit India on March 26, 2021, proved to be far deadlier as it unexpectedly swept even the rural areas, unlike the first wave. Believing COVID was restricted to urban areas, the residents of Chakai block in Jamui District of Bihar, primarily migrant workers and daily-wage labourers feared the debilitating impact of lockdown on work opportunities more than anything. The situation worsened in mid-April with an overwhelming surge in Covid cases in Chakai a total of 4,737 cases from Jamui including 13 deaths in Chakai were reported by the government agencies as of April 20, 2021, leading to a state of complete chaos and terror among the residents.
Many of our community volunteers from the village were infected. Varied questions and misconceptions regarding the virus, testing and vaccination surfaced during a virtual meeting held with them. It is then that PRADAN staff working as frontline workers, realized the urgency of connecting with the villagers and using our community media platform, CHIRAG Vani, as a substantial bridge for the same.