The Maharashtra government is weighing in on the possibility of a complete lockdown as the Covid-19 situation in the state continues to be grim. On Saturday, Mumbai alone reported 9,327 coronavirus cases. While stricter restrictions and complete weekend lockdowns were announced after a cabinet meeting last week, the state is now mulling a complete lockdown. Chief minister Uddhav Thackeray on Saturday chaired an all-party meeting to discuss the pandemic situation in the state where a proposal of a complete lockdown for 15 days was also floated. However, the meeting ended inconclusive.
At the meeting, suggestions of extending aid to the economically weaker sections and giving time to migrant workers to return to their hometowns in case of a lockdown was also discussed. The chief minister is expected to take a final call after meeting the Covid-19 task force on Sunday.
Maharashtra continues to top the coronavirus charts in the country, reporting maximum cases. The chief minister has also expressed apprehensions of another spurt in the ongoing wave of coronavirus. On Friday, Maharashtra reported 58,993 coronavirus cases and has been seeing an uptrend in the cases for the past one month.
Last week Maharashtra government had decided against imposing a complete weekend lockdown, but imposed stricter curbs to control the coronavirus situation. As the cases soared, the Maharashtra cabinet announced a weekend lockdown from 8 pm on Friday to 7 am on Monday.
Termed as 'Break the Chain Restrictions', these curbs include shutting of schools, Work from Home for private offices, closure of multiplexes, restaurants,theatres, malls, pubs, gyms, waterparks, etc, while the public transport has been asked to operate according to its capacity. The state also imposed Section 144 through the day and night curfew during the night. The delivery personnel and newspaper sellers are advised to get vaccinated to be able to do their job hassle-free. Government offices have been asked to operate on 50% staff strength as part of the restrictions.
Many other states and cities, including national capital Delhi, followed Maharashtra to impose night curfews and other restrictions to keep the coronavirus spread in check last week. Meanwhile, Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal has ruled out the possibility of lockdown, but has said restrictions will be imposed in view of exponential rise in covid-19 cases in national capital.