Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Sunday urged the people of the state not to lower their guard against Covid-19 and follow the safety protocols strictly in order to avoid imposition of another lockdown.
He said that although he has been advised to impose a night curfew, he does not believe that anything can be achieved by imposing such restrictions.
Stating that the Unlock process does not mean that the pandemic is over, Thackeray asked the people to remain cautious.
In a webcast, he said even though people were largely adhering to the Covid-19 safety protocols, many others were still not following the directive of mandatory use of masks and still venturing out into crowded places.
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“The spiralling cases in Delhi is a cause of concern and there is night curfew in Ahmedabad. I don’t want another lockdown, but you should also understand the gravity of the situation,” he said.
“We are standing at a dangerous turn. We have to decide whether we want to go for a lockdown or follow all the mandatory Covid-19 safety protocols,” he said.
“I have been advised to impose a night curfew, but I don’t believe that anything can be achieved by imposing laws,” he said.
“I thank you for celebrating a firecracker-free Diwali. But I must express my disillusionmentthat the Covid- 19 safety protocols are not being followed in many places.
“I urge you to avoid moving around unnecessarily and if you have to go out, please wear a mask and maintain physical distance,” he said.
The chief minister added that youths are getting infected by not following the safety protocol and they are passing on the infection to the senior citizens in their families.
“It is really sad that people whom we had protected all these months, get infected due to the younger members in the family,” he said.
Thackeray said confusion still prevails over the availability of vaccination and medicines for treatment of Covid-19.
“Till then, we have no option but to have mandatory use of masks, physical distancing and hand sanitization,” he said.
He pointed out that post-infection side effects of coronavirus were posing a serious threat to patients with co- morbidities.
“Post-Covid-19 side effects are severe and can been seen impacting brain, lungs, kidney among other organs.
Pollution is also impacting people with co-morbidities,” he added.
The chief minister said, “Unlock process did not mean that the pandemic is over. Even though the places of religious worship have been reopened, avoid crowding there. Several festivals passed off during the pandemic with majority people celebrating it without crowding. We have been able to control the spike, but we can’t be careless,” he said.
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“The second wave seen in several parts of the country like Delhi and Ahmedabad and the western countries looks like a tsunami and not a wave and we have to be cautious.
“Crowding will not kill coronavirus, but help it spread more,” Thackeray said.
He said that ‘My family, my responsibility’ campaign has helped the government to get the state’s health map.
Thackeray said there is uncertainty over reopening schools even though a decision has been taken about it.
The government had earlier decided to reopen schools for Classes 9 to 12 from November 23.