Harsh Vardhan said that Delhi is among those few states which need stringent measures, but added that the decisions in this regard have to be taken by the state and UT governments, not the Centre.
Coronavirus lockdown 3.0: After Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said that the UT government has had to face severe economic losses and decided to relax some of the restrictions in the national capital, Union Health and Family Welfare Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan on Monday told news agency ANI that in his personal opinion, the current situation of Delhi did not warrant such relaxations. He said, instead, Delhi needed more stringent measures to contain the rapid spread of COVID-19.
He said that Delhi is among those few states which need stringent measures, but added that the decisions in this regard have to be taken by the state and UT governments, not the Centre. While the Union Health Ministry and the Union Ministry of Home Affairs have given out detailed guidelines regarding different scenarios, it is upon the state governments to decide what measures are implemented in their territories based on their assessment of the situation, he added.
The Delhi CM had on Sunday said that the time had come to open Delhi, as the national capital had suffered severely economically due to the virus. He further said that since the UT is prepared in terms of testing kits and hospitals, Delhi is ready to be opened in a phased manner in places other than containment zones. He also stated that while the lockdown was important in order to contain the spread of COVID-19, Delhi is now fully ready to get relaxations from the lockdown rules. He also stated that the people of Delhi would have to be ready to live with the coronavirus.
While most of the activities allowed in Delhi are in accordance with what the Centre had suggested, the CM allowed citizens to conduct weddings with a capping of 50 people and funerals with a maximum of 20 people in attendance. Moreover, according to reports, state-run liquor shops in the UT have also been allowed to function, which led to long queues outside the shops, with no regard for social distancing.