PUDUCHERRY: Puducherry Chief Minister V Narayanasamy on Wednesday urged the Union government to allow the states to take their own decisions on the lockdown based on local conditions after May 17, instead of the Centre taking a uniform decision for all states.
In a video release, the Chief Minister said that as per the views of doctors, the COVID-19 pandemic will exist till September. The Prime Minister is yet to convey the Centre's plans on the lockdown and if it was extended after May 17, the revenue of state governments will be destroyed totally. Hence, the Prime Minister should consult the state Chief Ministers before taking a decision on the lockdown, he added.
He said on the one hand, the lives of the people needs to be protected and on the other, they must be fed. But the state governments are not in a position to generate revenue and hence the central government should release COVID-19 funds, he said.
Further, he urged the Union government to categorise COVID-19 affected areas as red, orange and green on the recommendation of the respective state governments. Narayanasamy said that the ground situation is known by the respective states and hence their opinion should be considered by the Union government. When a single person in an area is affected with COVID-19, it is not required to seal the entire area and keep 5000 people confined to their houses for 28 days, he said. The opinion of the state government is to seal one or two streets near the residence of the affected and leave the other areas free, he said.
The Chief Minister said several patients from the red zones of Villupuram and Cuddalore districts in Tamil Nadu are coming to Puducherry for dialysis and the administration will consider allowing them only if they come with a certificate from the hospital.
He said lorries coming to Puducherry from other states would be stopped at the border and screened, adding that a driver from the Union Territory will go to the border and bring the vehicle inside for unloading the goods.
The Chief Minister said all the 36 contacts of the fruit vendor from Theni who stayed for 15 days in Puducherry and tested positive for COVID-19 on his return home were traced and tested and all were found negative. However, the contacts have been quarantined and are being monitored.