Coronavirus outbreak: Cabinet reviews situation, but no decision on lockdown

Updated: Apr 08, 2020, 12:40 IST | Dharmendra Jore | Mumbai

Decides to continue the Shiv Bhojan meal priced at Rs 5 for the next three months and extends the facility to the taluka level as well

Uddhav Thackeray
Uddhav Thackeray

Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray held a cabinet meeting via video conference to review the situation in the state that is under lockdown to contain the spread of the novel Coronavirus. The CM told the ministers that the decision to lift the lockdown should be taken in an appropriate time and situation.

While Thackeray attended the meeting from his residence, some came to the Mantralaya while others joined from their respective district headquarters.

The cabinet, however, did not take a concrete decision on the lockdown, which was imposed by the Centre last month and is scheduled to end on April 14. The cases in the state continues to increase despite restrictions on movement of people and all public transport. The authorities have even identified hotspots, especially in worst-hit Mumbai and Pune, and sealed them. As of now, the cabinet has decided to lift restrictions for several types of ration card holders so that they can be provided foodgrains, pulses and sugar through Public Distribution System (PDS) till June. The white ration card holders, who are not covered under the subsidy scheme, may also get essential commodities through PDS.

The ministers also decided to continue the Shiv Bhojan meal priced at Rs 5 for the next three months and also extended the facility to the taluka level. They have all also agreed to amend the Maharashtra Charity Management Act to avail financial assistance from charitable trusts to fight the Coronavirus pandemic.

Special attention for Mumbai
On Tuesday, opposition leader and former CM Devendra Fadnavis asked Thackeray to extend the PDS facility to people without ration cards as well. Fadnavis expressed concern about the alleged inadequate preparation and inordinate delay in following the protocol for medics engaged in treating COVID-19 patients.

"In Mumbai, where the pandemic has gained gigantic proportions, we must think very seriously about the doctors, nurses and others who are in the front line of the battle but getting infected because the safety protocol hasn't been put in place," Fadnavis wrote in a letter to the CM.

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