Can’t lift curbs completely, says Punjab CM - ECAS Punjab

Can’t lift curbs completely, says Punjab CM

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Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 24

Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh on Friday said it would not be possible to lift the Covid-19 lockdown completely for some more time, as the state had witnessed three peaks in the Covid-19 curve in the past 40 days.

'Will adhere to panel's advice'

I will go by the expert committee's advice. Most likely, it will submit its recommendations on Saturday. If it recommends lifting the restrictions, partially or completely, the state will do so. Capt Amarinder Singh, Chief Minister

Before deciding on lifting the curbs, he said, the state would factor in the recommendations of a 20-member expert committee, which was formed to formulate the state's exit strategy.

"I will go by the committee's advice. The recommendations are expected to be submitted on Saturday," Capt Amarinder said during a webinar with leading industrialists, economic experts, diplomats, and ambassadors of foreign countries.

If the expert committee, which includes medical experts and doctors, recommended lifting the restrictions, partially or completely, the state would do so, he said in response to questions.

The Chief Minister made it clear that people's health was the priority, even though the state government was aware that the lockdown could not be in place indefinitely. Of the 22 districts in the state, five are in the green zone.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is scheduled to consult with the Chief Ministers on lifting the lockdown through a videoconference on Monday.

Capt Amarinder, during the webinar, extended his condolences to Italian ambassador Vincenzo de Luca for the large number of lives lost in Italy due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The envoy, on his part, expressed solidarity with the people of Punjab in their fight against the virus.

Capt Amarinder also directed the Department of Industries and the district industries centres functioning under DCs to provide all units, which are eligible to reopen, with requisite approvals and curfew passes within 12 hours of applying for the approval.

Amid reports of reluctance of industrial houses to reopen their units under stringent Covid-19 guidelines, the Chief Minister assured them that he would ask the Centre to support the industry during the Monday's videoconferencing.

The CM also conveyed to the industry the Centre's clarification that there would no penal action against any unit if a worker was found infected with the deadly virus.

Capt Amarinder informed industrialists the Centre had not released state's GST dues and also rejected its request to open liquor vends, leading to a revenue loss of Rs6,200 crore. "I will again raise the matter with the Prime Minister," he added.

Rs 6,200 crore revenue loss

CM Capt Amarinder Singh informed industrialists the Centre had not released state's GST dues and also rejected the request to open liquor vends, leading to a revenue loss of Rs6,200 crore. "I will again raise the matter with the Prime Minister. For a small state such as Punjab, GST dues and revenue from liquor sale hold the key to fight the virus," he said.



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