Namaste may keep you safe from Coronavirus
While the world is gripped by Coronovirus fear, India is already reaching there with almost 30 new cases. As we all know that the virus is spread via droplets — coughing or sneezing — or by touching the affected surfaces, greeting each other in traditional handshake is a complete no-no. Should we say that the world has finally recognised the power of namaste!
Jokes apart, many countries are chucking their traditional ways of greetings to ‘safe’ salutations.
China: Adopt the traditional gong shou gesture — a fist in the opposite palm — to say hello.
Spain: With just a month to go before the week leading up to Easter, Spain’s most cherished traditions — the kissing of the hands or feet of sculptures of Mary and the saints — could be banned.
France: Newspapers have been filled with advice on how to replace kissing on the cheek — an everyday greeting in the country. And simply looking into a person’s eyes can suffice as a greeting.
Poland: The faithful will be allowed to take ‘spiritual communion’ instead of consuming the communal bread — or taken in the hands rather than the mouth. No dipping of hands in holy water when going in and out of church either. Instead, make the sign of the cross.
Iran: A video has gone viral showing three friends meeting — hands in their pockets, with two of them wearing masks — tapping their feet against each other as a greeting. There are similar videos from China as well.
New Zealand: Some institutions have temporarily abandoned the Maori greeting hongi — which involves two people pressing their noses together. The alternative? A waiata, or Maori song.
UAE & Qatar: The Arab nations are advising citizens to stop the traditional ‘nose to nose’ greeting.
USA: NBA players should fistbump with fans instead of high-fiving them and avoid taking items to autograph, the league told teams in a memo.
Sri Lanka: Similarly, England Test captain Joe Root said his players will not be shaking hands on their tour of Sri Lanka, but will instead greet each other with fistbumps.