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At PM-CMs meet, Rupani favours gradual lifting of lockdown

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Press Trust of India Ahmedabad
Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani favoured a gradual lifting of the coronavirus-enforced nationwide lockdown during interaction of CMs with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday through video-conferencing, said an official here.
Rupani maintained that interests of daily wage labourers, small as well as big shop owners and self-earning people should be kept in mind if the lockdown is extended beyond May 3, he said.
"Lockdown needs to be gradually lifted. The state will follow the Centre's guidelines and lift the lockdown in a gradual and step-by-step manner, depending on the number of (COVID-19) cases going down (in different areas), secretary in the Chief Ministers Office, Ashwani Kumar, told reporters, quoting Rupani telling the meeting via video link.
Gujarat, with 3,301 novel coronavirus cases and 151 deaths so far, is second only to Maharashtra on both counts in the country.
Kumar said at the PM-CMs meeting, Rupani gave details regarding how Gujarat is fighting the virus and decisions taken to open some sectors of the economy (outside containment zones & COVID-19 hotspots) to bring the life back to normalcy.
Rupani presented a detailed picture of how Gujarat is fighting against coronavirus. He said the state is testing extensively and conducting detailed survey and surveillance (to detect positive cases) in big cities, Kumar said.
Rupani informed that the state has 61 dedicated COVID-19 hospitals which have 10,500 beds with required number of ICUs and ventilators.
"We will increase the number of beds in a week to 22,500 in our COVID-19 Care Centres, he said, quoting the chief minister.
The chief minister told the meeting that Gujarat is analysing reasons for high COVID-19 fatality rate as 151 people have died so far, which comes to 4.57 per cent (of total cases), more than the national average of 3.07 per cent.
We are analysing the cause of death rate in Gujarat due to COVID-19. The pattern that has emerged is that 85 per cent of those who have died had co-morbid conditions (pre- existing illnesses), Rupani told the meeting.
Rupani said three districts of the state have so far not recorded any COVID-19 case, while 18 districts have only single digit cases. So the situation is under control in these 21 districts, the CMO official informed.
The chief minister apprised the meeting about the decisions taken by the state government to ease the lockdown, imposed in late March, in select areas, Kumar said.
He informed the meeting about relaxations given to farmers for crop harvesting and other activities, and also to fishermen.
"Rupani informed about starting industries in rural areas, permission given to construction projects in urban areas with conditions and opening of standalone shops, Kumar said.
Modi held a video-conference with the chief ministers of various states and Union territories to discuss the situation arising in the country due to the COVID-19 outbreak and the lockdown imposed to stem its spread.

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First Published: Apr 27 2020 | 6:32 PM IST

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