Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday interacted with Chief Ministers of Maharashtra, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, and Odisha via video conferencing to discuss the COVID-19 related situation in these states.
PM Modi urged states where COVID-19 cases are rising to take proactive measures to prevent a third wave and stressed on moving forward with the strategy of test, track, treat and 'tika (vaccine)'.
PM Modi said apprehensions about a third wave of the coronavirus are being expressed with number of cases in some states a matter of concern.
"We are at a point where there are talks about a possible third wave of COVID-19. In last few days, around 80% of new cases have come from these 6 states. The states reporting high caseload need to take proactive measures to stop the possibility of a third wave of COVID19," PM Modi said.
Rise in COVID-19 cases in Maharashtra and Kerala is a matter of grave concern for the country, PM Modi said. It is very important that the states, where cases are increasing, should take proactive measures to prevent any possibility of a third wave, the Prime Minister said.
He urged the states to proceed with stricter measures and focus on ‘Test-Track-Treat-Vaccinate’ approach. "We need to move ahead with a focus on 'Test-Track-Treat- Vaccinate' approach," PM Modi said.
Emphasising on the need to prevent crowds from gathering at public places, PM Modi said there is a need to be aware, alert and strict in this regard.
He said funds are being made available to all states for making available new intensive care unit (ICU) beds, increasing testing capacity and for all other needs. Recently, the central government released an emergency COVID-19 response package of more than Rs 23,000 crore, PM Modi pointed out.
“The government of India has announced an emergency response package of Rs 23,000 crores to combat COVID-19. The states must use funds from this package to strengthen their health infrastructure. Infrastructural gaps need to be filled. There is also a need to focus on rural areas,” PM Modi said in his address after the meeting.
This comes three days after the Prime Minister on Tuesday took stock of the COVID situation with chief ministers of the northeastern states.
Acknowledging the fact that India is still in the midst of the second wave, a detailed analysis of the COVID-19 situation of the north-eastern states was done in the meeting.
The Prime Minister had advised strong steps at the micro-level and quoted Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma for not resorting to lockdown but making containment zones at the micro-level. He was asked to administer a caution.
PM Modi had also asked to identify best practices and use them on a broad scale. The Prime Minister acknowledged that many businesses have borne losses, especially in the tourism industry.
(With inputs from Agencies)