Updated: Oct 3, 2020
28th September 2020
According to Indian Express, Prime Minister Narendra Modi asked the Chief Ministers of seven badly affected states — Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Delhi, and Punjab — to think about imposing one-two-day lockdowns and observe its impact on economic activities.
Indian Express reported that during the virtual meeting with the Chief Ministers and health officials, PM Modi stated, “The lockdown brought benefits. Globally too, it has been appreciated. However, now we have to focus on micro containment zones, which will ensure that the spread is contained. States have to assess how effective are the lockdowns that are being imposed for one-two days.”
As reported by Indian Express, PM Modi suggested that the states take the issue very seriously and to ensure that the economic activities do not face problems during the short lockdowns. The Prime Minister repeated the need for states to strengthen their tracing and tracking strategy to reduce the number of patients affected by COVID-19. He mentioned that the primary focus should be on effective testing, treating and surveillance, and clear messaging.
The Chief Ministers are to host daily virtual meetings with officials of the districts and blocks so that clear communication on containment goes to the grassroots level. The PM assured that the Government had taken measures to enhance the use of the ‘State Disaster Response Fund’ (SDRF) to fifty per cent for improving COVID-19 infrastructure.
Following requests from many states, the Centre has increased the utilization of SDRF from thirty-five per cent to fifty per cent to support COVID-19 infrastructure across India. The Prime Minister is hoping that this decision will result in more funds becoming available for the state in the long run.
The Prime Minister asked the seven CMs to learn from the best practices from other states, reported Indian Express. As he mentioned in the virtual meeting on 23rd September 2020, the country now has the highest testing and recoveries. Many states have adopted several best practices. The progress made in clinical management over the last few months is helping India a lot in fighting the pandemic.
At the beginning of the meeting, PM Modi appreciated the efforts of doctors who have been treating patients under the flagship scheme of ‘Ayushman Bharat’, which completed two years on Wednesday, 23rd September 2020. In a short span of two years, more than 1.25 crore patients who cannot afford expensive cures have received free treatment under this scheme.
Over seven-hundred districts are infected with the novel coronavirus — numbers show that they are concentrated in seven states across sixty districts. Implementing mini lockdowns is essential for India to fight against COVID-19.
(Source: Indian Express) Edited by Meghna Venkatesh