Vijayawada: The lockdown seems to have brought out people’s hidden talents or perhaps it is a case of desperate times calling for desperate measures. With haircutting salons across Andhra Pradesh being shut down in view of the COVID-19 lockdown, people have taken to cutting their own and their children’s hair.

“My eight-year-old son Rohit was in urgent need of a hair cut. I searched for haircutting salons in my locality but all were closed. Left with no alternative, I cut his hair at home using a trimmer and a pair of scissors. My son was happy with the new hairstyle,” said Manoj Kumar of Vijayawada city.

A few netizens also shared pictures and videos of their handiwork on social media.

Siva Kumar K, a software professional in Vizag city, said, “I managed to trim my beard with the trimmer but messed up when I tried to cut my hair with it. But my friend came to my rescue and trimmed and restyled my hair.”

Meanwhile, some people have been getting some professional help via WhatsApp. “Having long hair in summer can be irritating. I took the help of a barber through WhatsApp video call and he instructed me on how to cut my hair with the trimmer. My daughter also helped me get a perfect haircut. Like me, many of my friends have also sought haircutting tips from barbers through video calls,” said Ravi Teja.

There are over 80,000 hair salons in various cities, towns, and rural areas of Andhra and over 2.5 lakh barbers depend on this profession for years. The lockdown has meant a loss of livelihood for many of them. K. Prasad, the owner of a haircutting salon, said, “We are requesting the government to allow us to visit the homes of people to cut their hair. We have lost our jobs due to the lockdown. We also request the government to help us by providing Rs. 10,000 to each family engaged in the profession.”

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