13 Apr 2021: What is the Amravati model of lockdown to battle COVID-19?
Maharashtra, the worst-hit Indian state in the COVID-19 outbreak, is again witnessing an unprecedented surge in new coronavirus cases.
During a review meeting held by Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, he was reportedly advised to impose a strict lockdown for 15 days.
Some members also cited the Amravati model of lockdown. But what exactly is it and how can it help Maharashtra battle the virus?
Details: COVID-19 cases started surging in Amravati in February
Amravati saw a steep rise in coronavirus cases in the first week of February.
By February 14, the town in the Vidarbha district had 2,828 active cases of COVID-19 and added another 1,000 infections by February 18.
Its case count surged to 5,012 by February 20 and 6,740 by February 26, according to a report by India Today.
Lockdown: The Amravati pattern of lockdown
In the wake of the spike, the district administration had initiated a number of measures.
Firstly, a weekend lockdown was imposed on February 18.
However, as the situation didn't improve, the authorities announced a fresh lockdown between February 22 and February 28, which was later extended until March 8.
All public gatherings were banned while essential services and industrial activities were allowed to operate.
Pattern: District authorities decided against complete lockdown
During the lockdown period, all schools, coaching institutes and other public spaces in the area were shut.
All the social, religious, educational and cultural gatherings also remained prohibited.
However, government offices and banks were allowed to operate with 15% employees. Goods transportation and industries were also allowed while hotels and restaurants were free to sell parcels.
Quote: Maharashtra Minister praises the Amravati pattern
Maharashtra Women and Child Development Minister Yashomati Thakur praised the Amravati pattern of lockdown saying the city was the first to take such a step when the second wave of infections began.
Thereafter, as the situation improved, shops were allowed to remain open till 5 pm, and vaccination drive was expanded to ensure that some 5,000 people were inoculated in the district per day.
Impact: Lockdown helped reduce active cases, improve recovery rate
The lockdown restrictions had helped in reducing the number of active cases in Amravati to 2,838 within just three weeks, eventually easing the pressure on local hospitals and healthcare facilities.
The recovery rate of coronavirus patients in the city has also jumped from 79% in February to 91% now.
On Sunday, Amravati registered 446 new cases.
Situation: Decision on lockdown in Maharashtra expected soon
Meanwhile, the Maharashtra government is expected to soon take a call on imposing lockdown.
The state reported over 63,000 new cases yesterday taking the tally to 34.07 lakh infections. It also added 400 more fatalities.
Cumulatively, India logged more than 1.6 lakh fresh infections on Monday pushing the nationwide tally to 1.36 crore.
The country's death toll currently stands at over 1.71 lakh.