New Delhi, Jun 17, 2020: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday said that the nation’s collective fight against the deadly coronavirus pandemic is far from over and urged all the chief ministers to get ready for Unlock 2.0.
The PM also reportedly rubbished all speculations about the Centre re-imposing lockdown to curb the coronavirus. The PM urged all Chief Ministers to "fight rumours" while being mindful of the challenges, Zee reported.
The PM noted that the spread of COVID-19 is more in a few big states and cities and urged the chief ministers to make full use of their state’s existing testing capacity and also work to augment health infrastructure.
Speaking to the chief ministers, PM Modi said big crowds, lack of physical-distancing, daily movement of a large number of people and small houses in some cities have made the battle against coronavirus "more challenging".
A statement issued by the Prime Minister’s Office said, "Prime Minister Narendra Modi today held the second part of two-day interaction with CMs via video conferencing to discuss the situation post Unlock 1.0 and plan for tackling the COVID-19 pandemic."
"The CMs thanked the PM for his leadership and briefed him about the ground situation in states & their preparedness to tackle the impact of Coronavirus. They talked about health infrastructure available to meet the challenge & steps taken to strengthen it further," the PMO said.
It added that Home Minister Amit Shah (who also took part in the video conference) said that we’ve so far been quite successful in our fight against the virus under the leadership of the PM, but the battle is far from over.
"We now need to focus on phase 2 of the Unlock process, while at the same time, how to minimise any possibilities of harm to citizens," the PM told the CMs.
It may be noted that the PM had on the first day of his interaction with the CMs on Tuesday given a strong hint of further opening of the economy while ensuring that basic rules like wearing a mask, maintaining hygiene, and observing social distancing are followed strictly.
"We have to always keep in mind that the more we can stop the corona, the more it will stop growing, the more our economy will open, our offices will open, the markets will open, the means of transport will open, and so will new employment opportunities," he had said.
PM Modi reiterated that India has been able to stop the exponential growth of the pandemic due to timely intervention.
He stressed that in India, very few patients are in need of ICU or ventilators. However, the PM laid special emphasis on increased testing, and the need to expand the same health infrastructure.
Key states like Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka, Bihar and Telangana were part of Wednesday`s meeting.