By Express News Service
BHOPAL: Sunday lockdown was announced on Wednesday in urban areas of all 52 districts of Madhya Pradesh amid the uncontrolled surge of the second COVID-19 wave across the central Indian state.
A high-level meeting chaired by CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan also decided to impose a night curfew (10 pm to 6 am) in urban areas of all districts, which will be effective from Thursday.
Further, it was also decided to impose a weeklong lockdown from 7 pm on Thursday in Chhindwara district, which neighbours Maharashtra.
Further, the meeting also cleared the decks for two days of lockdown in Shajapur district operational from 8 pm on Wednesday evening. Also, all government offices would function 5 days a week for the next three months (Monday-Friday from 10 am to 6 pm).
The development came just a few hours after the CM, while maintaining that lockdown will always be the last option to control the spread of COVID-19 second wave, had said that lockdown in some districts cannot be ruled out if it’s necessary to save lives.He had also ordered a ban on the movement of passenger vehicles to and from Chhattisgarh till April 15.
Shivraj Singh Chouhan also informed about raising the number of hospital beds for COVID patients from the present 24,000 to 36,000. The number of free beds for the poor will be increased to 15,000.
Further, the daily free of cost COVID testing facilities for suspected patients would be raised to 40,000. Also, the maximum rate of RT-PCR and Rapid Antigen testing by private labs/hospitals was fixed at Rs 700 and Rs 300 per test respectively. An additional Rs 200 would be chargeable in case of samples being collected from home.
Also, the maximum rates for other tests at private hospitals/nursing homes and diagnostic labs were fixed by the government, including Rs 600 for ABG, Rs 500 for D-Dimer, Rs 1000 for Procalcitonin and IL-6, Rs 200 for CRP and Rs 180 for Serum Ferritin. Additional Rs 200 would be a chargeable per test if the samples are to be collected from home.
Keeping in mind the rising demand for the Remdesivir Injections amid reports of shortage of supply and black marketing of the anti-viral injection in Indore, the CM also announced determining SOPs and Protocols for the use of the injection at hospitals across the state. The CM also announced that the state government would procure Remdesivir Injections for rendering it free to poor and middle-class patients.
Also, a door to door survey campaign titled Kill Corona-2 will be started in those districts, where the pandemic surge is rising fast. The campaign would identify the houses having suspected COVID-19 patients.
Also, each of the 52 districts will have at least one COVID Care Centre.
The slew of decisions came amid the state reporting 4043 fresh cases and13 deaths over the past 24 hours, which took the total active cases in the state to 26,059, total positive cases since March 2021 to 3,18,014 and total deaths to 4086.
The daily positivity rate which stood at 11.1% on Tuesday further rose to 12% on Wednesday.
Over the last 24 hours, at least six districts of the state reported fresh cases in three digit figures, including Indore (866), Bhopal (618), Jabalpur (269), Gwalior (181), Ujjain (123), Barwani (108) and Umaria (114). Out of these two districts, Barwani and Umaria are largely rural districts.