BHOPAL: The Madhya Pradesh government will restrict the movement of people from neighbouring Chhattisgarh to curb the spread of COVID-19 and a lockdown will be enforced in isolated areas whenever needed, MP Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said on Sunday.
Talking to reporters here, Chouhan said they have already sealed Madhya Pradesh's areas bordering Maharashtra.
"There will now be restrictions on movement from Chhattisgarh. Those who need to come for necessary and unavoidable work will be allowed on humanitarian grounds and transportation of goods will continue," he said, citing the spread of COVID-19 in the neighbouring states.
Chouhan said patience is needed to control the pandemic.
"I will go out with a loudspeaker on my vehicle at 6 pm on Monday and appeal to people to maintain physical distance and wear masks," the chief minister said.
Maharashtra on Saturday reported 49,447 new COVID-19 cases, the highest rise in a day so far, taking its tally to 29,53,523.
Besides, Chhattisgarh recorded 5,818 COVID-19 cases on Saturday, its highest single-day spike, taking the count of infections in the state to 3,63,796, as per official figures.
Chouhan said those coming to MP from these states for necessary and unavoidable work were being screened.
If found necessary, they will be kept in isolation, but the general movement of people will not be allowed.
"They are our brothers and sisters, but we have to take such measures to control the spread of the coronavirus," he said.
The CM said more than 3,000 fresh cases of coronavirus were reported in Madhya Pradesh on Sunday.
He also said there will be a limited lockdown in the affected areas whenever needed, but there will be "no lockdown in the entire state".
He urged social workers and religious leaders to run a public awareness campaign to check the spread of the viral infection.
Chouhan noted that a three-day lockdown is going on in Chhindwara and two-day restrictions are in place in Betul.
"I don't want such lockdowns because this affects businesses and employment.
Our priority is to protect the people without a lockdown," he said.
Chouhan said the BJP is likely to announce an awareness campaign on Sunday under which its MLAs, MPs and other leaders will appeal to people to use masks and maintain social distancing to defeat the coronavirus.