Maharashtra: As Uddhav Thackeray mulls lockdown, NCP, BJP & Sanjay Raut oppose the move
Sena MP Sanjay Raut, NCP's Nawab Malik and State BJP President Chandrakant Patil (R to L)

Maharashtra: As Uddhav Thackeray mulls lockdown, NCP, BJP & Sanjay Raut oppose the move

Maharashtra recorded 31,643 new cases of coronavirus and 102 deaths on Monday.

Amid a constant rise in the COVID-19 cases in Maharashtra for almost a month, Uddhav Thackeray in a meeting on Sunday directed officials to prepare for lockdown guidelines along with standard operating procedures (SOPs) so that lockdown can be enforced in a planned manner.

The Chief Minister said that cases are rising because people are not following guidelines seriously and that is why strict steps, like lockdown, are needed to be considered.

However, few leaders in Shiv Sena along with ally NCP have opposed the move to impose a total lockdown in the state.

Maharashtra Minister and NCP leader Nawab Malik on Monday said that the state cannot afford a lockdown and he has asked Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray to consider other options.

"We can't afford a lockdown. We've asked the CM to consider other options. Due to rising cases, he has directed the administration to prepare for a lockdown but that doesn't mean that a lockdown is inevitable. If people follow rules, it can be avoided," Nawab Malik told news agency ANI.

Stating that another lockdown will hit the poor hard, Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut has also urged the Chief Minister to avoid a complete lockdown in the state.

“A complete lockdown will hit economic activities in the state. It will hit the poor hard. Industries, shopkeepers, traders, the working class – everyone will be hit hard. That is why I am not in favour of a complete lockdown,” The Indian Express quotes Raut as saying.

Meanwhile, the Maharashtra unit of BJP has also opposed the idea of imposing a lockdown to control the surge of COVID-19 cases.

"Lockdown is not the solution. We will protest against lockdown. If lockdown is imposed then the government should announce a package to people affected by lockdown," Maharashtra BJP chief Chandrakant Patil said on Monday.

On Monday, Maharashtra recorded 31,643 new cases of coronavirus and 102 deaths, taking the active caseload to 3.36 lakh. Mumbai recorded 5,890 new cases on Monday, Pune saw 4,972 and Nagpur reported 3,243 new cases.

Sena MP Sanjay Raut, NCP's Nawab Malik and State BJP President Chandrakant Patil (R to L)
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