Maharashtra Revenue Minister Balasaheb Thorat
Maharashtra Revenue Minister Balasaheb Thorat

Mumbai: Ahead of the state government’s guidelines on the lockdown in the wake of galloping Covid-19 cases in Maharashtra, the Revenue Minister and veteran Congress leader Balasaheb Thorat in an emotional appeal urged the people to cooperate with the government in combating the virus.

“The government has to immediately take a decision to curb the virus infection. The state is heading for a difficult phase. Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray is holding talks with the Task Force. The lockdown is inevitable. Everybody should cooperate to combat the virus,’’ said Thorat.

However, Thorat argued that the state government should provide a relief package for the poor and weaker section of the society who will hit hard due to the lockdown. “After finalizing the package, the government will announce the lockdown. The state cabinet may meet on Wednesday and give its nod for the imposition of lockdown,’’ he noted.

Thorat said the state government had worked hard to tackle the pandemic since March last year and it has provided relief to 10 lakh people who were given two meals in relief camps. “What the Centre has provided? Was it visible?’’ he questioned.

Thorat took a swipe at the BJP saying that instead of merely criticising the state government it should make efforts to get Remdesivir injections which are currently in short supply due to increasing demand from patients.

Further, the Medical Education Minister Amit Deshmukh said the government will have to take a decision for the imposition of a lockdown amid rising Covid-19 cases and rising stress on health infrastructure.

On the other hand, the Public Health Minister Rajesh Tope urged people to be ready for the imposition of lockdown in the state. The minister said the state government could increase the pace of vaccination and can administer jab to 6 to 7 lakh people daily provided the Centre releases 40 lakh doses per week.

Tope said the government is making all efforts to strengthen and expand the health infrastructure and also focusing on the optimum use of existing facilities including Oxygen, medicines and beds.

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