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Odisha extends lockdown till April 30; schools to be shut till June 17

Odisha has extended the lockdown till April 30 and shut educational institutions till June 17.

, ET Bureau|
Last Updated: Apr 09, 2020, 06.34 PM IST
Naveen Patnaik
Odisha extends lockdown till April 30.


Bhubaneswar: Odisha has extended the lockdown in the state till April 30 and shut educational institutions till June 17 to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus.

“At this crucial juncture one has to decide between protecting lives of people and economic activity. The state cabinet, which met today, decided that saving the lives of our people is the topmost priority at this juncture,” chief minister Naveen Patnaik said at a briefing on Thursday.

The state cabinet also decided to request the Centre to extend the 21-day nationwide lockdown, ending on April 14, to April 30. Odisha wants the Centre not to resume train and air service until the end of the month. Activities related to agriculture, animal husbandry and the flagship rural employment scheme MGNREGA will be facilitated during the lockdown period while following social distancing norms.

"I thank the 4.5 crore people of Odisha for all the support and cooperation each one of you has been extending in this serious crisis situation. I know it involves a lot of sacrifice, hardship and uncertainty, but this is the only way to face this crisis,” said Patnaik.

That Odisha had only 42 positive cases of Covid-19, since the first case was reported on March 15, was a reflection of the disciple shown by citizens, said Patnaik. “In the same period, the USA – a superpower – has moved from 3,000 to four lakh cases. The United States has lost more people to Covid-19 than all the wars and the 9/11 attack put together and has still not locked down the country as a whole,” said Patnaik.

Speaking to ET on Wednesday, Biju Janata Dal MP Pinaki Misra had said he expected the Centre to extend the nationwide lockdown. Odisha had asked the Centre for flexibility in exit strategies.

Referring to Odia migrant workers stuck in other states, the CM requested they be looked after in the respective state, while promising to continue to look after workers from other states similarly stuck in Odisha.

The CM assured the state’s people that food would not be in shortage and that the state was leaving no stone unturned in scaling up Covid-19 testing and treatment. “We propose to do one lakh rapid testing in the state at the earliest possible time. We would like to thank doctors from all over the country who have volunteered to offer their services in telemedicine,” said Patnaik.
(Catch all the Business News, Breaking News Events and Latest News Updates on The Economic Times.)

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