Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa on Wednesday hinted that strict measures may continue, saying coronavirus has not completely come under control and cases are still high in rural areas.
He however indicated that relaxation may be given to certain sectors, as he announced that export oriented businesses will be allowed to operate from Thursday, June 3.
The state is currently under lockdown till June 7, and there were speculations about it being extended.
"I will have a discussion with everyone to make a decision on measures that need to be taken regarding lockdown. Most importantly I have decided to give permission to those involved in exports. So export oriented business will be allowed from Thursday", Yediyurappa said.
Speaking to reporters in Bengaluru, he said he will hold a discussion on various other things with senior ministers and officials, and will take a decision on the lockdown by today or tomorrow.
"Will discuss on how to go about extending the lockdown and taking strict measures with experts and will take a call after taking their suggestions", he said.
Coronavirus has not completely come under control, it is still record high in rural areas, we will take a decision considering how to balance things and go ahead," he added.
The CM is chairing separate meetings with experts, also senior Ministers and officials this evening.
The state's COVID-19 Technical Advisory Committee (TAC- consisting of experts), in its report to the government mentioned that COVID restrictions can be relaxed only when the positivity rate is below 5 percent and the number of cases drop below 5,000.
The state government had initially announced 14 days "close down" from April 27, but subsequently imposed a complete lockdown from May 10 to 24, as the COVID cases continued to spike. Citing lockdown yielding results and experts advice, it was further extended till June 7.
Responding to a question regarding the second lockdown relief package, the Chief Minister said he will take a decision on it in a couple of days.
Yediyurappa had earlier said that a second financial package for the COVID-induced lockdown was under consideration, and is aimed at providing relief to certain sections left out in the first one.
As the state was battling the second wave of the virus, he had recently announced Rs 1,250-crore financial package as relief for those whose livelihood has been affected by the lockdown.
The total number of active cases in Karnataka fell below 3 lakh mark, as the state on Tuesday had reported further decline in fresh cases at 14,304. The total number of infections stood at 26.18 lakh while the toll was 29,554. The positivity rate stood at 12.30 percent, while case fatality rate (CFR) was at 3.24 percent.