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Lockdown in Maharashtra again? CM Uddhav Thackeray asks officials to prepare plan

Mumbai: Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray followed the recommendation by state COVID-19 task force and asked officials to prepare a plan to implement a lockdown which will not have a major impact on economy.

As per an official release, the chief minster held a meeting with Health Minister Rajesh Tope and other officials. While the members of the task force expressed apprehension that the state might report 40,000 new COVID-19 cases in the next 24 hours.

The COVID-19 task force recommended that to stem the rise in coronavirus cases the state government will have to implement stricter lockdown measures. Following which, the chief minister asked officials to prepare a detailed plan for implementation of a lockdown which will have a minimum impact on the economy of the state, the release stated.

“There should not be any kind of confusion among the people once a lockdown is announced,” CM said. Maharashtra has reported as many as one lakh new COVID-19 infections over the last week.

On Friday, the chief minister directed officials to impose section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure under which gathering of five or more persons is banned, the order comes into effect from March 28.

Earlier, minister Tope warned that if people do not follow laid out COVID-19 rules then a total lockdown will have to be imposed. Rajesh Tope stated while attending an event in Maharashtra’s Jalna. He said that if people do not wear masks, do not follow social distancing norms then lock down will have to be imposed. “If people do not wear masks, do not follow social distancing, then we will have to impose a lockdown,” he said. 

Meanwhile, on Saturday, a night curfew was imposed and the state government banned all types of gatherings, including political and religious. Also, restaurants, gardens, parks, baches and malls will remain shut between 8 pm to 7 am.

Maharashtra on Saturday reported 35,726 new coronavirus positive cases, the second-highest daily rise, which took the tally to 26,73,461. At 166, the state reported the highest number of fatalities due to COVID-19 in this year so far.

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