The budget session of the Meghalaya Assembly resumed on Wednesday after it was suspended in March due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The three-day re-assembled budget session started amid the COVID-19-induced lockdown, with wearing of masks made mandatory for all, including the chief minister, ministers and MLAs. All the legislators had to undergo a thermal screening and sanitise their hands before they were allowed to enter the House.
Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma announced in the Assembly that a Rs-5,000 financial relief would be provided to the active quarantine centres set up by communities in the state.
"A one-time grant of Rs 5,000 will be awarded to the active community quarantine centres through the Chief Minister's Relief Fund," he said while replying to a zero-hour notice.
According to the chief minister, a total of 7,050 people from Meghalaya, who were stranded in different parts of the country, have returned to the state.
Sangma said his government will try to bring back all the citizens of the north-eastern state, who are stranded in various parts of the country, within two weeks.
He informed that the state government has decided to carry out both the Rapid Diagnostic Test and the RT-PCR test for COVID-19 on all the returnees.
The chief minister said the state government is encouraging the returnees to go for home quarantine and added that the administration is flexible when it comes to encouraging people to set up quarantine centres at the community and village levels.
Earlier, opposition Congress MLA M Syiem demanded that the state government set up more institutional quarantine centres as over 10,000 people stranded across the country are set to return home.
He also demanded that the government provide funds to support the communities that have set up quarantine centres at their villages across the state.
Syiem also said the quarantine period be increased from 14 days to 28 days to curb the spread of COVID-19.
There is only one active COVID-19 case in Meghalaya as of now. One person, who returned from Chennai recently, has tested positive for coronavirus.
The state had reported 14 COVID-19 cases, of which 12 patients have recovered and one has died.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)