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Most states request PM Modi to extend lockdown for 2 more weeks

The government is considering the request made by the Chief Ministers during the Video Conference chaired by Mr Modi. Mr Modi said that it is very important to concentrate on the safety of the people. 

He added that he motto of the government earlier was ‘jaan hai to jahaan hai’ but now is ‘jaan bhi jahaan bhi’, highlighting the importance of people’s lives. He said, our fight against Coronavirus will be strengthened as long as every citizen of the country keeps fulfilling responsibilities and follows the instructions of the government and administration. 

PM Modi said, while talking about the lockdown, he had emphasized that to save the life of every citizen, lockdown and adherence to Social Distancing is very important. Most of the people understood this and fulfilled their responsibilities by confining themselves to their homes. He said, we all had followed this mantra and made efforts to save the lives of other countrymen.
Prime Minister observed that the combined efforts of the Centre and the States has definitely helped reduce the impact of COVID-19 but since the situation is rapidly evolving, constant vigilance is paramount. He emphasized the criticality of coming 3 to 4 weeks for determining the impact of the steps taken till now to contain the virus, adding that teamwork is the key to facing the challenge. 

Mr Modi categorically assured that India has adequate supplies of essential medicines and said that measures are being taken to ensure availability of protective gear and critical equipment for all front-line workers. He also gave a stern message against black marketing and hoarding. 

Condemning and expressing distress at the instances of attacks on the doctors and medical staff, and at incidents of misbehavior with students from North-East and Kashmir, Prime Minister underlined that such cases need to be dealt with firmly. He also spoke about the need to curb Lockdown violations and ensure that social distancing is followed.
Talking about the Exit Plan from lockdown, Prime Minister said that there seems to be a consensus amongst the states on extension of lockdown by another two weeks. He underlined that the motto of the government earlier was ‘jaan hai to jahaan hai’ but now is ‘jaan bhi jahaan bhi’. Prime Minister talked about strengthening healthcare infrastructure and reaching out to patients through tele-medicine. 

He also suggested that direct marketing for farm produce can be incentivised to prevent crowding in mandis, for which model APMC laws should be reformed swiftly. He said, such steps will help farmers sell products at their doorstep.

The Prime Minister also spoke about popularizing the Aarogya Setu app to ensure downloads in greater numbers. He referred to how South Korea and Singapore got success in contact tracing.

He said, based on those experiences, India has made its own effort through the app which will be an essential tool in India’s fight against the pandemic, he said. He also referred to the possibility of the app being an e-pass which could subsequently facilitate travel from one place to another.
Talking about the economic challenges, Prime Minister said that the crisis is an opportunity to become self-reliant and turn the nation into an economic powerhouse.
The Chief Ministers provided feedback about the COVID-19 positive cases in their respective states, steps taken by then to maintain social distancing, ramp up healthcare infrastructure, mitigate difficulties of migrants and maintain supply of essentials. 

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