New Delhi : Lockdown was extended on Sunday in Delhi, Haryana, Rajasthan and Puducherry with many states already imposing COVID-induced restrictions till May-end to rein in infections and deaths during the second wave of the pandemic.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal announced that the ongoing lockdown in the national capital will continue for another week and said the process of “unlock” will start from May 31 in a phased manner if the number of COVID-19 cases continues to decline.
The Rajasthan government, which extended the coronavirus lockdown by 15 days till June 8, also said the state may allow some relaxations in commercial activities from June 1 in districts where the COVID-19 situation will show significant improvement.
Extending the lockdown till May 31, the Haryana government said the positivity and fatality rates have to be brought down further, though it did allow some relaxations in the curbs.
In the past 24 hours, Delhi recorded around 1,600 positive cases and the positivity rate went further down to below 2.5 percent, Kejriwal said in an online briefing.
He said if the lockdown is lifted now, the gains made in the last one month through a lot of struggles, hard work and sacrifice may be lost.
“If the current downward trend in number of cases sustains in next one week and people follow precautions against COVID with strict discipline as they have done so far, we will start the process of unlock from May 31,” he said.
Haryana State Chief Secretary Vijai Vardhan, in an order, said the lockdown, which was earlier imposed till May 24, has been extended till May 31.
However certain relaxations were given like standalone shops have been allowed to function during the day. The other shops, except in malls, are allowed to open from 7 AM to 12 PM on an odd-even basis.
Over two weeks ago, there were nearly 1.15 lakh active cases in the state, which now stand around 40,000.
“Now, after duly considering the fact that although the Covid positivity has come down, however, Mahamari Alert/Surakshit Haryana needs to continue so as to bring it and the fatality rate down even further,” said the order issued on May 23.
Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan too had Saturday announced that the coronavirus-induced restrictions in the state would be gradually relaxed from the next month.
“Our target is to free our state of COVID-19 by May 31. We will have to unlock the coronavirus-induced-curfew gradually from June 1. The world has to move but we will need to unlock in such a manner that COVID-19 doesn”t spread again,” he had said at a meeting to review the coronavirus situation on the state.
Lockdown-like restrictions have been extended up to May 31 in most of the districts including Bhopal.
However, Odisha”s COVID-19 tally mounted to 6,92,382 on Sunday as the state reported its highest single-day spike of 12,852 new cases, despite undergoing lockdown for more than two weeks, a health department official said.
The state also registered 28 fresh COVID fatalities, the biggest one-day count, which took the toll to 2,484, he said. Odisha is under lockdown till June 1.
The Uttar Pradesh government had also extended partial corona curfew till 7 AM May 31 on Saturday. Among the southern states, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka and Telangana have extended their lockdown this month, while Andhra Pradesh will continue to have curfew.
The Puducherry government on Sunday announced the extension of the ongoing lockdown till May 31 as COVID-19 cases continue to soar in the union territory. The two-week long lockdown clamped on May 10 is to come to an end on May 24 midnight. In the Northeast, the Mizoram government has extended total lockdown in Aizawl and other district headquarters till May 31. Nagaland, Meghalaya and Arunachal Pradesh have extended the restrictions till month-end. The daily rise in coronavirus cases in India remained below the three lakh mark for the seventh consecutive day with 2.4 lakh new cases recorded in a single day, the Union Health Ministry said on Sunday. With the fresh cases, India”s tally of COVID-19 cases climbed to 2,65,30,132. The death toll due to the disease rose to 2,99,266 with 3,741 fresh fatalities, the ministry data updated at 8 am showed. The active cases further reduced to 28,05,399 comprising 10.57 percent of the total infections, while the national COVID-19 recovery rate improved to 88.30 percent. The number of people who have recuperated from the disease in the country surged to 2,34,25,467 while the case fatality rate stood at 1.13 percent, the data stated.