Mumbai News

Mumbai local train shutdown warning to Section 144: Maharashtra fights to stop coronavirus – Livemint

With a total of 42 coronavirus cases in the state, Maharashtra is facing its worst ever public health crisis in the recent history. From closing down the educational institutions to imposing Section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code in Nagpur and Nashik, India’s most industrial state is leaving no stone unturned to contain the spread of virus.

Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray urged the residents to avoid non-essentials travels across the state. He also warned that complete suspension of Mumbai’s lifeline — the local train services— may be inevitable if people do not avoid unnecessary travels.

At present, there are 42 coronavirus patients in the state.

Here are the latest updates on how Maharashtra government is trying to curb coronavirus spread in the state

1) Uddhav Thackeray said on Tuesday that state government offices would run with minimum work strength. The state government asked the private offices to work at 50% attendance.

2) Mumbai hotel and restaurants are advised to follow Pune model where they have voluntarily decided to close for next three days from Wednesday to avoid virus spread, Thackeray added.

3) To combat against the deadly coronavirus, Maharashtra Election Commission postponed all the upcoming elections in the state. Around 1,570 gram panchayats in 19 districts are scheduled to go for elections on March 31, according to state election commission. Eleections to the Aurangabad Municipal Corporation and Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation have also been postponed until further orders.

4) Several temples in Maharashtra, including Siddhivinayak Temple in Mumbai and Mumbadevi Temple in Mumbai decided to remain closed for devotees in the wake of coronavirus infection.

5) The Central Railway on Tuesday cancelled 23 trains amid coronavirus scare. Railways also increased platform ticket price from 10 to 50 in Mumbai, Pune, Bhusawal, and Solapur divisions.

“The Central Railway has increased platform ticket price from 10 to 50 in its Mumbai, Pune, Bhusawal, and Solapur divisions till further orders in order to curb crowd at stations,” the Public Relations Officer (PRO), Central Railway, in a press statement.

6) Section 144 of CrPC were imposed in Nagpur and Nashik to avoid public gatherings. “Police imposed prohibitory orders (Section-144 of CrPC) in the city to avoid gathering of people in a place, in the wake of coronavirus crisis. The order shall remain in force till March 31,” said Ravindra Kadam, Joint Commissioner of Police, Nagpur.

Around 40,000 shops are closed in Nagpur. However, essential items and medical shops are available. Authorities also shut down all parks and gardens of Nagpur Metropolitan Region Development Authority (NMRDA) till March 31.

7) As the number of coronavirus cases climbed to 18 in the city, the Pune hotel and restaurant association has decided to close down all 850 hotels in the city for three days beginning today.

“The police requested us to halt operations, it’s also our moral duty. There are 850 hotels in the city, in which around 25,000 people work,’ said G Shetty, President of Pune Restaurants and Hoteliers Association. Pune traders’ body also decided to close shops in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic.

8) The state government has decided to stamp all those people who have been sent to 100% ‘home quarantine’. The Thackeray government has made it a punishable offence if any person attempts to evade the compulsory quarantine, or breaks ‘home quarantine’ and would forcibly move such person to a government isolation facility.

9) Maharashtra government has warned that any person or institution or organisation indulging in propagating fake messages on coronavirus will be liable for punishment.

10) Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope on Wednesday said seven more laboratories will come up across the state for testing suspected novel coronavirus cases. At present, only three labs are operating in the state at Mumbai, Nagpur and Pune where samples of suspected persons are tested.

“KEM, JJ Hospital and Haffkine Institute will soon get the testing facilities. Most likely they will commence operations in the next five days,” Tope told reporters.