New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday interacted with state Chief Ministers via video conferencing and discussed various aspects relating to the Covid-19 situation in the country.
The interaction between Mr Modi and the chief ministers is expected to focus on the next move in India’s plan against the coronavirus disease as well as a graded exit from the 40-day lockdown.
Only nine chief ministers have been giver time to speak due to time constraints in the meeting, the fourth between Mr Modi and the chief ministers on the coronavirus pandemic since March 20.
Several states want restrictions under the national lockdown to be eased in regions that have not witnessed local outbreaks of Covid-19 amid demands for curbs to remain in place in hotspots.
The states have said the ban should continue on mass gatherings, educational institutions must remain closed, interstate transport prohibited, except in cases of enabling the movement of migrant workers, and social distancing must be strictly observed.
The states are also expected to demand a financial package from the Centre.
Another important issue likely to figure at the meeting is a clearer policy on migrant workers and the chief ministers of Rajasthan, Odisha, Chhattisgarh, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh and Bihar are expected to seek relaxation on interstate transport for allowing stranded labourers to return home.
A day before, Mr Modi has said the people of the country were displaying grit against the global Coronavrus pandemic and were also getting success, but everyone had to keep in mind that even a little carelessness or overconfidence could prove dangerous.
“We should not be overconfident. We should not presume that COVID-19 will not enter our homes, offices and colonies. We have to stay vigilant. We should ensure that we are never negligent. I appeal to you again. ‘Do gajj doori, bahut hai zaroori, (two-meter distance is of utmost importance),” PM Modi cautioned in the 11th episode of the second section of his monthly programme ‘Mann Ki Baat’.
Addressing the countrymen, he has said the whole world was currently facing a global crisis and India was not untouched by this but India’s position was far better than other states because the people here had taken care of themselves.
The Novel Coronavirus cases in the country climbed to 26,917 on Sunday as Maharashtra recorded further rise in the number of patients amid the ongoing lockdown to contain the spread of the highly contagious pathogen.
With a big increase in the casualties in the past 24 hours, the death toll mounted to 826 by Sunday evening, Union Health Ministry said in its report.
The active cases of COVID-19 in the country at present stood at 20,177.