COVID-19: Kant-led empowered group discusses way forward with industry leaders, UN officials

New Delhi, May 18 (PTI) Aviation industry captains on Monday presented their business resumption plans and discussed contemporary challenges facing the sector due to COVID-19 with Amitabh Kant-led empowered group and Civil Aviation Secretary Pradeep Singh Kharola.

Kant, who heads the empowered group on coordinating with private sector NGOs and international organisations, also interacted with United Nations India resident coordinator Renata Desallien, and country heads of UNICEF, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the World Health Organization (WHO) and discussed the way forward in preparing for a social-economic new normal.

As the economy is opened up further with lockdown relaxations, contact tracing and testing intensity in containment zones will hold the key, the Niti Aayog CEO said during the Empowered Group 6 interaction with WHO and UN officials.

'Industry captains from the aviation sector presented their business resumption plans, contemporary challenges & discussed the requisite #COVID management protocols for safe passenger movement in the future, to the Empowered Group 6, led by CEO @amitabhk87 & Secretary @MoCA_GoI,' the Aayog said in a tweet.

Like other countries, India resorted to a country-wide lockdown on March 25, with stringent measures to limit movement of people to curb coronavirus spread in the country.

      With three phases of lockdown over, the government  on Sunday extended the curbs, though with some more relaxations, for two more weeks till May 31. On COVID-19 cases trend, Niti Aayog CEO Kant tweeted, 'Maharashtra now accounts for 33% of the total cases in India with Mumbai primarily driving the growth. Mumbai, Pune, Aurangabad,Thane and Nashik account for 28% of the total cases in India. State must focus on these 5 districts including tight containment within containment zones.' The nationwide tally of COVID-19 cases crossed one lakh and the death toll surpassed the 3,000-mark on Monday. PTI BKS MKJ