Mumbai local update amid coronavirus outbreak: Uddhav says trains will continue but warns Mumbaikars from unnecessary travel
Photo: CMO Maharashtra/Twitter

Maharashtra has been hit the hardest when it comes to the novel coronavirus, with 41 people testing positive as of Tuesday. One person who had earlier tested positive also passed away on Tuesday.

Speaking about the people who have tested positive, Uddhav Thackeray said that while one patient was in a serious condition, others in the state were stable. In total there were 26 male and 14 female patients.

While there had been speculation that the state government would temporarily halt local train, metro rail, monorail and BEST bus services to avoid the spread of the virus, no such announcement was forthcoming.

Officials however announced measures that would act as a deterrent for large crowds gathering at railway stations, from raising prices for platform tickets to installing thermal scanners at some stations.

On Tuesday evening Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray announced that public transport to remain open and that all government offices would remain open in Maharashtra.

"Trains and buses are essential services so we are not stopping them as of now but if people don't listen to our advice and don't avoid unnecessary travel, then we will think about that too. Next 15-20 days are very crucial for us," he said.

For the time being, the train services would continue with "extra care" to curb the spread of the virus.

The Chief Minister said that while there would be no holiday for seven days for government offices, they would be operating with 50% attendance.

This, he and health minister Rajesh Tope said, would reduce the load on public transport. Establishments of Non essential services would remain closed.

The Chief Minister also asked Mumbai hotels and restaurants to follow Pune model where outlets have voluntarily decided to close for next three days from Wednesday to avoid coronavirus spread.

The next 15 days, he said, would be crucial in tackling the viral outbreak in the State.

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