Spell out an exit strategy: Congress to PM

Updated: Apr 29, 2020, 08:24 IST | Agencies | New Delhi

Congress chief spokesperson, Randeep Surjewala says the prime minister is expected to lead the nation in such a crisis

A police personnel presents a flower to migrants for following curfew guidelines, during a nationwide lockdown, in Jammu, on Tuesday. Pic/PTI
A police personnel presents a flower to migrants for following curfew guidelines, during a nationwide lockdown, in Jammu, on Tuesday. Pic/PTI

The Congress on Tuesday asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi to spell out a clear exit strategy for Coronavirus lockdown after May 3, saying the nation is waiting for it. Congress chief spokesperson, Randeep Surjewala said the prime minister is expected to lead the nation in crisis like these.

"We once again appeal to the PM to come out with a clear exit strategy for the lockdown, to state the roadmap for economic revival and to deal with the health pandemic post May 3, as also restrict the lockdown only to hotspot zones," he told the media at a press conference through video-conferencing. He said the chief ministers requested the PM to tell the nation what is the exit strategy from the lockdown.

"What is the government's strategy on the health front and the economic front in terms of post lockdown period? What is the roadmap for the future course after May 3? How is the PM going to come out with financial action plan 2 as Sonia Gandhi has demanded and so have many experts, be it for starvation, migrant labourers, or be it for kickstarting the economy or the small and medium enterprises?" the Congress leader said.

The appeal comes a day after Modi met chief ministers of various states through video-conferencing and sought their views, while also spelling out the government's strategy on tackling COVID-19. Most of the chief ministers have demanded extension of the lockdown and urged PM to take a call on the exit strategy, while asking him to have a cautious approach in opening it.

States navigate through Corona crisis

Relaxations in Delhi: The Delhi government has allowed from Tuesday some relaxations in the ongoing lockdown and has approved services of electricians, plumbers and sale of educational books even as it has said no other relief will be given till May 3. In an order issued late on Monday night, the government also allowed the movement of inter-, intra-state and air travel of all healthcare workers and scientists.

More cases in TN: Two city police personnel and a flower vendor at the Koyambedu market on Tuesday tested positive for Coronavirus, officials said. Authorities have taken up disinfection work and testing of those associated with the trio who become the latest COVID-19 patients, taking the total in Tamil Nadu to 1,940, they said. Pay cut stalled: The Kerala high court on Tuesday stayed for two months the operationalisation of the state government order to deduct the salary of government employees for fighting the COVID-19 pandemic in the state.

Justice Bechu Kurian Thomas issued the interim order considering a batch of petitions filed by a section of employees and their organisations challenging the government decision. Bengal's bus drivers seek help: A bus operators' association in West Bengal on Tuesday wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking a financial package for the passenger transport sector, which has taken a severe hit amid the Coronavirus-triggered lockdown.

'Contactless dining' free for restaurants

Zomato CEO, Deepinder Goyal on Tuesday said that the company has made its 'contactless dining free for all restaurants across India and other global destinations for a period of at least six months. Restaurants in India, the UAE, Australia, New Zealand, Turkey, Portugal, Philippines, Indonesia, and Lebanon will have to only bear the payment gateway fee and Zomato won't charge any fee from them.

Don't buy veggies from Muslims: MLA in video

Bharatiya Janata Party MLA from Barhaj constituency in Deoria district, Suresh Tewari, was on Tuesday seen in a video clip, telling people not to buy vegetables from Muslim vendors. The clip has now been widely shared on social media, triggering a controversy. "I am saying openly don't purchase vegetables from Muslims (ek cheez dhayan mein rakhiyega, main bol raha hoon openly, koi bhi miyan ke hathon sabzi nahi lega)," the MLA can be heard saying in the clip.

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