Lights off for eight minutes in Chennai, but TV screens glow

August 9th, 2008 - 12:51 am ICT by IANS  


Chennai, Aug 8 (IANS) Lights went off in several thousand houses in this city at 8 p.m. Friday but television screens continued to glow in the dark, as people remained glued to the unfolding razmatazz of the Beijing Olympics. In Chennai, the 88888 campaign began in the morning to spread awareness about energy saving measures to combat climate change. On Friday, the date marked 08-08-08. The Lights Out campaign was organised to create awareness about global warming.

School children and adults joined a gathering of morning walkers on the city’s beaches to switch off their mobile phones at 8 a.m. and keeping them off for full eight minutes.

Techies from software companies chipped in by switching off all power using gadgets, during the 8 a.m. slot.

“I read about these campaigns in the papers, I wanted to do my bit,” said Amit Chaturvedi, working for a BPO in the city.

In other parts of the city, school children cycled for eight minutes, carrying placards about saving energy.

At 8 p.m., however, the lights went off in many houses across the city, switched off by children participating in the campaign, but television screens remained on in most households with viewers glued to the colourful opening ceremonies of the Beijing Olympics.

Exnora International, which organised the 88888 campaign, said last week that more than 40 percent people in this coastal city, which would be directly affected by global warming and rising sea levels, did not know what “global warming” meant.

The Tamil Nadu government had promised to cooperate in the campaign but government departments, especially the electricity department, had lights blazing everywhere across the city, no power cuts this night.

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