Maharashtra COVID fear: Follow protocols avoid new lockdown, urges government
Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh TopeTwitter/@rajeshtope11

Maharashtra COVID fear: Follow protocols avoid new lockdown, urges government

Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope requested people to understand and cooperate with the government since the state could not afford another lockdown.

Mumbai: The Maha Vikas Aghadi government has appealed to the people of Maharashtra to take precautions and help ‘avoid’ a new lockdown.

A day after Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray served a warning of 8-10 days to the people, state Health Minister Rajesh Tope requested people to understand and cooperate with the government since the state could not afford another lockdown. CM Thackeray has restated that wearing masks is ‘mandatory - both before and even after getting vaccinated’, failing which the ‘invisible enemy’ will attack.

Tope in a social media appeal said, “Our state is known for its sensitive, understanding and cooperative people. We have seen how they cooperated patiently during the (2020) lockdown. Avoiding a lockdown is now in your hands. Another lockdown will be unaffordable. Therefore, it is my appeal to strictly follow masking, sanitising and safe physical distancing to avoid lockdown.”

After Thackeray's strict message, political rallies, large social gatherings, religious congregations, etc are being cancelled or postponed or truncated. The police in Mumbai, Pune, Nagpur and other places swooped on the organisers of such events or restaurants where people were seen not following COVID-19 protocols.

The state seems headed on the course for another round of severe restrictions with stringent curbs slapped in Nagpur, Pune, Nashik, Amravati, Akola, Yavatmal, Aurangabad, Satara and others amid apprehensions of a second lockdown. In many districts, schools/colleges have been shut again for offline classes, and the government is deliberating to evolve a consensus on conducting the SSC and HSC Board exams offline in April-May.

Meanwhile, the administration in Mumbai has found that asymptomatic patients and high-risk contacts who step out of quarantine are contributing to the current massive spread of infection with cases multiplying in the city.

(With inputs from IANS)

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