The Mumbai suburban district guardian minister Aaditya Thackeray, said yesterday that the MVA government will take a decision in the next two days on allowing fully vaccinated people to travel on local trains. “The government has been discussing the issue for the last two to three weeks and will announce a decision in two days permitting people with two vaccine jabs to travel in local trains. The government is also contemplating relaxing some more curbs for the fully vaccinated people,” he said.
A senior bureaucrat in the state told this newspaper that Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray has been in talks with the state Task Force, experts and other stakeholders on allowing the fully vaccinated people to travel by local trains. “The CM will soon hold a virtual dialogue with the citizens and make an announcement in this regard. However, the government expects citizens to follow COVID-appropriate behaviour,” the official said.
Aaditya's announcement comes a day after the high court had made some scathing observations for not allowing people with two vaccine shots to travel on local trains. Further, Aaditya’s announcement is important as CM Thackeray had said that the resumption of local train services was being considered and it will be taken with a “sense of responsibility”.
Public Health Minister Rajesh Tope has said the government was not opposed to allowing the fully vaccinated people to travel on local trains but it had been put on hold as the CM will take a final decision. So far, only those engaged in essential and emergency services as categorised by the government are allowed to travel on local trains as part of the state's efforts to check the spread of Covid-19.
The Mumbai regional Congress Committee president, Bhai Jagtap, made a fresh appeal to the state government for resumption of local services for fully vaccinated people, citing it has been the primary and most convenient mode of transport in Mumbai. The Congress is a partner in the three-party state government.
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