Streets were deserted in the Indian capital on Monday and office buildings shuttered as a lockdown to halt the spread of the coronavirus began and Prime Minister Indian Narendra Modi urged people to stay at home and save themselves.
India has reported 415 cases of the coronavirus and seven deaths but health experts have warned that a big jump could be imminent, which would overwhelm the underfunded and crumbling public health infrastructure.
Modi said many Indians were not taking the lockdown seriously.
“Please save yourself, save your family, follow the instructions seriously,” he said on Twitter.
The lockdown in the capital of more than 18 million people will last for the rest of the month.
Indian authorities banned gatherings of more than five people in several of India’s states including Maharashtra in the west, which has had the highest number of cases. They warned of legal action against people violating the ban.