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Opposition frustrated as they thought Yogi government would fail on coronavirus: Dinesh Sharma

They thought the UP government would fail on the coronavirus situation and they would get a chance politically. But they are frustrated as the coronavirus cases are under control — in fact, our mortality rate is among the lowest at 2.5%, we have done maximum quarantine of people and are doing over 10,000 tests daily,” Sharma said.

, ET Bureau|
Last Updated: May 28, 2020, 12.38 AM IST
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Dinesh sharma UP
Uttar Pradesh Deputy CM Dinesh Sharma.
NEW DELHI: Opposition parties in Uttar Pradesh had smelt a political opportunity assuming the Yogi Adityanath government would fail to control the Covid-19 situation, but are now a frustrated lot as that has not happened, deputy chief minister Dinesh Sharma said.

Referring to recent statements of Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra and Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav criticising the UP government,Sharma said they had exposed themselves before the people.

“They thought the UP government would fail on the coronavirus situation and they would get a chance politically. But they are frustrated as the coronavirus cases are under control — in fact, our mortality rate is among the lowest at 2.5%, we have done maximum quarantine of people and are doing over 10,000 tests daily,” Sharma told ET during an interview. “The opposition is just out to criticise rather than cooperate with us in this crisis — people are watching this.”

Sharma criticised the Maharashtra government, saying it could have “done much more” to help the migrants from UP. The state has reported a spike in Covid-19 cases with an influx of returning workers, especially from Maharashtra which is the worst affected by the pandemic. More than 22 lakh migrants have returned to UP so far.

“We are taking all precautions and safety measures in bringing back our people. Maharashtra should have done much more — they (migrants) were on the road there and starving. So, we had to bring back our people and not let them die of hunger there,” he said. “Now, our priority is they stay back and work in their home state. It is the wrong policies of the erstwhile Congress governments that made these people migrate from UP in the first place.”

The deputy CM said a skill-mapping exercise covering 16 lakh such migrants was complete and a Migrant Commission was being set up to work on ensuring jobs and self-employment for them.

“Our MSME sector is huge and can use the skills of these returning migrants. Also, we have small units coming up in the one-district-one-product scheme. We are also trying to accommodate them in MGNREGA and self-employment opportunities,” Sharma said. The government will help migrants get bank loans if they want to be self-employed and government land is being identified for making shops for them at cheaper rates, along with providing basic facilities like water and electricity, he added.

While the effort will be to get migrants to settle with work in their home district, the Migrant Commission will aid them if they want to work outside their home district and also help them with residential accommodation by building dormitories in such places on a war-footing, Sharma said.
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