Initiating Maharashtra Government's 'Mission Begin Again', Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Sunday evening said that the Government is fully equipped to handle the coronavirus pandemic even when the COVID-19 cases have peaked in the state. Without naming the BJP leaders, Thackeray took a jibe at them and said, "I am pained as few people are defaming Maharashtra," and slammed their demand for the deployment of Army and President's rule in the State.
Stating that the Govt is fully equipped to handle the pandemic, Uddhav said that earlier there were only two testing labs in the state but now there are 77 labs and it will increase to 100 in next two days. There were only 250 ICU beds earlier, now there are 8,500, he said. He added that Jumbo facilities or field hospitals in Mumbai, Thane, Pune and Aurangabad with 1000 to 2000 beds have been set up and the task force is working 24x7.
Uddhav said that out of the 65,000 COVID-19 cases in the state, over 28,000 patients have been cured. There are 34,000 active cases of which 24000 are without any symptoms and only 200 are on the ventilator, he said.
The Chief Minister said that more than 16 lakh stranded migrants have been ferried to their home states through 800 trains (11.5 lakh migrants) and 42,500 ST buses (5.5 lakh migrants). He also thanked Railway Minister Piyush Goyal for providing trains. Uddhav added that Rs 85-90 crore from the CM Relief Fund has been spent to tackle the virus.
The Chief Minister also said that a cyclone is approaching the western coast. He said entire machinery is put on alert. "I appeal the fishermen to not venture into the sea for a few days," the CM said.
Uddhav also explained the phase-wise opening of lockdown. However, he said that it was mandatory to wear a mask and to follow other guidelines. "Maharashtra should create an example for the other states in the country," he added.