Coronavirus is big crisis, follow govt orders: Pawar to people

Mumbai, Mar 27 (PTI) Terming the coronavirus outbreak a grave crisis, NCP president Sharad Pawar on Friday urged the people to follow the government's directives to contain its spread.

He said if people do not follow the government orders, then everybody will have to face serious consequences.

Pawar said this during a live interaction with people on Facebook.

He said he has seen several calamities like earthquakes, floods and droughts in the past, but the present crisis is 'very serious'.

During the interaction, Pawar's daughter and NCP MP Supriya Sule read out some of the queries and appeals addressed to him. It included an appeal made by state Health Minister Rajesh Tope, who was viewing the live interaction, in which he requested Pawar to urge the people to stay indoors.

In his response, Pawar said, 'It is our duty to support your and your team's efforts...I am staying indoors and will not venture out.

The former Union minister welcomed the Central government's economic package and RBI's decisions to tide over the crisis.

He, however, said, 'The package for agriculture sector is not enough. It is impossible to repay the crop loan. Some steps should be taken for the horticulture sector as well.' The Centre on Thursday announced the Rs 1.7-lakh crore stimulus that included free foodgrain and cooking gas to the poor for three months, and cash doles to women and senior citizens as it looked to ease the economic impact of the 21- day nationwide lockdown.

Pawar appealed to the people to maintain self- discipline and also asked the police to exercise restraint and allow movement of vehicles transporting essential services and goods. PTI MR NP NP