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Partial lockdown returns to Maharashtra after spike in COVID cases

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Mumbai (VSK). Several district administrations on Monday imposed complete or partial lockdown in addition to the state-wide ban on social, political and religious gatherings amidst spike in COVID-19 cases in Maharashtra.

Maharashtra recorded 6,900 new cases on Sunday (Feb. 21). This led to a week-long complete lockdown in Western Vidarbha districts of Amravati, Akola and Buldhana, and night curfew in several other districts including Nagpur, Yavatmal, Washim, Jalna, Aurangabad, Satara, Nashik, Pune, Pimpri Chinchwad and parts of Solapur district.

Formal announcements in this regard came from district collectors on Monday (Feb. 22) even as Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, while addressing the people of the state last night, had indicated re-imposition of lockdown.

“Lockdown shall start from tomorrow evening wherever needed. It shall not start all of a sudden. We aren’t putting a stop to any development works. People will have to follow all restrictions,” Thackeray had said on Sunday evening.

“I shall monitor people for the next 10-15 days and if the Covid-19 norms were flouted, I will be forced to re-impose a lockdown in the state,” he added.

Meanwhile, Maharashtra Cabinet Minister Chhagan Bhujbal tested positive for Covid-19 on Monday.

While announcing it over the micro-blogging site twitter, he said, “Everyone who has come in contact with me in the last two or three days should have their corona tested. My health is good and there is no reason to worry. All citizens should take proper care of the corona.”

While India registered 14,199 fresh Covid-19 cases on Sunday, active cases across the country have risen to 150,055 and caseload tally has crossed the 11-million mark. The country continues to be second-most-affected globally, and ranks 14th among worst-hit nations by active cases. The five most affected states by total cases are Maharashtra (2,093,913), Kerala (1,034,657), Karnataka (948,149), Andhra Pradesh (889,298), and Tamil Nadu (848,275).

Amid the spike in coronavirus infection in the state, Mumbai, the financial capital of the country, has witnessed 36.38 per cent rise in the active Covid-19 cases since February 8, as per the city civic body data. Infections are also rising in neighbouring areas of Thane, Navi Mumbai and Kalyan-Dombivli.

Mumbai Police Commissioner took to micro-blogging site Twitter and informed the citizens that Mumbai Police too would be active on the field tracking people not following rules.

“Dear Mumbaikars, @MumbaiPolice is now authorised to issue challans to offenders not wearing a mask too. Every time we fined you for not wearing a helmet or seatbelt it was always to remind you the value of your life & safety. Same for masks. Please take care. You matter to us,” the Commissioner tweeted.

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