Image Source – Deccan Herald
At the time when a lot many speculations about the extension of the lockdown period, Odisha has become the first state in the country to have extended the period. In a video statement from the Chief Minister of Odisha, Naveen Patnaik, he said that the government has deiced to extend the lockdown period to 30th April in the state.
On Thursday, the CM said, “During ongoing lockdown period amid COVID-19 crisis, your discipline and sacrifice has provided us the strength to fight COVID-19,”.
Going as per the official figures shared by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, as on 9th April, Odisha has over 40 confirmed cases of the novel Coronavirus which includes 2 people who have recovered and 1 patient was lost his life.
This decision of extending the lockdown period was announced after a cabinet meeting was held to discuss the importance and need of extending the lockdown. In the statement issued by the Odisha Government, Patnaik announced, “At this crucial juncture, one has to decide between protecting the lives of people and economic activity. We will recommend to Government of India to extend the national lockdown up to April 30. In addition to this, we will also request the Union Government not to start airline and railway services till April 30,”.
For the Odisha natives who are stranded in other states because of the nationwide lockdown, CM Patnaik said, “As regards people from Orissa who are stranded in various parts of the country, our intervention for their well-being will be through the concerned state governments. Odisha will take care of all the people who are stranded in Odisha”.
For various sectors, the Odisha government will take several measures and activities relating to the MGNREGS(Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme), Agriculture, and Husbandry will be facilitated during the period of lockdown with following of Social Distancing norms.
“As has been stated earlier, there will not be any problem in the transport of goods. We are leaving no stone unturned in scaling up Covid-19 testing and treatment facilities. We propose to conduct one lakh rapid tests in the state at the earliest possible time” added CM Patnaik.
Also, in the statement, he said that the educational institutions in Odisha will remain closed until 17th of June.
He said, “Coronavirus is the biggest threat that the human race has faced in more than a century. Life will not be the same ever. All of us must understand this and face it boldly together. With our sacrifice and with the blessings of the Lord Jagannath this too shall pass,” as he addressed the people in the state on Thursday.