BHOPAL: Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Thursday said if required a night curfew will be reimposed in the state to curb the COVID-19 spread and urged people not to travel to Maharashtra which has witnessed a sharp rise in cases in the last two weeks.
He advised labourers to avoid going to districts of Maharashtra bordering Madhya Pradesh in search of work in view of the COVID-19 situation in the neighbouring state and said they will get jobs under MGNREGA in their native places.
"I appeal to people, that if possible, they should avoid visiting Maharashtra where coronavirus is spreading fast, especially those living in border districts," Chouhan said in his address to the people of the state.
The CM said though the state government at present is not considering reimposing a night curfew, if the situation warrants, the measure will be taken to check the spread of coronavirus.
Cautioning people in the backdrop of a spurt in cases of coronavirus in the state, especially in Indore, Chouhan advised citizens to strictly follow COVID-19 guidelines on masks and social distancing to avoid the situation getting bad.
The crisis management group in each district is chalking out guidelines specific to local conditions to deal with the virus.
Officials in some districts have decided not to organise large traditional melas in their areas.
In places like Bhopal, Indore and in districts close to Maharashtra like Betul, Chhindwara and in Dindori, the number of positive cases have gone up in the last few days.
"We dont want to impose a (fresh) lockdown again as it will be detrimental to the economy. Therefore, I appeal to people to follow guidelines and wear masks to beat the virus," he said.
"My government will take all possible measures to check the spread of the virus, but alarm bells are ringing," the chief minister said.
Border districts like Burhanpur, Khandwa, Khargone, Betul, Chhindwara, Seoni and Balaghat should take extra care and people coming from Maharashtra should be screened on their arrival in the state, he said.
Chouhan said the coronavirus crisis is not yet over and pointed out that in the USA, over five lakh people have succumbed to the dreaded virus.
But in India, under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, coronavirus has been effectively controlled, the BJP leader said.
Now people aged 60 and above and those above 45 and suffering with serious problems will be administered vaccines (from March 1).
"But we need to be patient and alert to beat the dreaded virus," he added.