Govt likely to extend nationwide lockdown after requests from states

Govt likely to extend nationwide lockdown after requests from states

The Union government is likely to extend the nationwide lockdown beyond April 14 after various state governments and experts demanded that the restrictions be continued to contain the spread of novel coronavirus.

“A lot of state governments as well as experts are requesting the central government to extend the lockdown. The central government is thinking in this direction,” a government source told PTI.

The sources, however, did not confirm whether the government has taken a final decision in this regard.

On Monday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had asked countrymen to be ready for a long battle against the coronavirus pandemic, and exhorted people to not feel tired or defeated while and expressing confidence the country will emerge victorious in its fight. 

Modi had also urged his cabinet colleagues to come up with a ‘business continuity plan’ which, many believe, is an indication of the government’s move to lift the lockdown in a phased manner.

On Tuesday, Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu said the final week of the ongoing lockdown is “critical” for evolving an exit strategy as data regarding the spread of coronavirus will have a bearing on the decision to be taken by the government. 

The 21-day lockdown was imposed on March 25 midnight, with only essential services exempted. 

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