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Lockdown diary from Meghalaya

Deepti Asthana | Updated on May 08, 2020 Published on May 08, 2020

Glimpses of life in a state that has only 12 Covid-19 positive cases so far

* Meghalaya has been observing a lockdown since March 16, suspending all interstate movement, thereby reducing the level of Covid-19 infections.

The Covid-19-induced lockdown has brought a country of 1.3 billion people face-to-face with an unprecedented situation. While large parts of India continue to witness episodes of chaos and confusion — especially the distress of migrant workers — the North-East has been relatively calm in terms of adapting to the lockdown.

With 46 million people (4 per cent of the country’s population), the seven states in the region account for only 0.26 per cent of India’s Covid-19 positive cases.

Meghalaya, which has reported only 12 positive cases so far, is not taking matters lightly. Chief minister Conrad Sangma is in favour of continuing the lockdown, in order to secure the state and keep its borders sealed. In fact, Meghalaya has been observing a lockdown since March 16, more than a week before Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced a national lockdown.

The timely suspension of interstate movement is believed to have reduced the level of infection in Meghalaya.

Despite the lockdown, essential supplies are available in Shillong, the state capital, and the towns and villages; but it is also true that the local economy has taken a hit. The average citizen has also had to deal with the temporary shutdown of services such as banking.

From May 4, however, government offices in Meghalaya have been functioning at full strength. The next big task for the Sangma government is dealing with the economic impact of the lockdown.

Published on May 08, 2020