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Lockdown to be extended till May 3: Modi

BL Internet Desk | Updated on April 14, 2020 Published on April 14, 2020

The lockdown to curb the spread of Covid-19 will be extended to May 3, PM Modi said in his address to the nation on Tuesday. While admitting,that the nation might have paid a big economic price for the lockdown, he said that "there can be no alternative to saving human lives".

The lockdown, that came into effect on March 25, was to expire on midnight tonight.

 

The fight against coronavirus will be made more stringent in the next one week, since new hotspots can create a new crisis, he said.

Some relaxations may be allowed after April 20 in places where there is no hotspot, the PM said, but, the government will issue more extensive guidelines on Wednesday.

He said that various stakeholders, including States and experts, favoured extending the lockdown.

The prime minister assured the citizens that there is an adequate stock of medicines and ration.

'Quick decisions'

Modi started his address by saying that social distancing and the nationwide lockdown have helped India fight the coronavirus.

"As compared to many developed nations, India is in a much better position due to its holistic approach and quick decisions," Modi said. We did not wait for the coronavirus problem to grow, but we tried to stop at the spread by taking fast decision, he said, adding that if India didn't take quick decisions, the situation would have been different.

India’s fight against coronavirus is going on very strongly, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in a televised address to the nation on Tuesday.

 

Congress' reaction

Reacting to the prime minister’s address, Congress leader Abhishek Singhvi, said that the speech was "hollow on specifics". There is no financial package, neither for poor nor middle class," he said.

PM’s address without specific guidelines is like Hamlet without Prince of Denmark: he said.

 

"We want concrete palliatives for deprived classes, and even for middle class, and MSMEs," Singhvi said.

Former Finance Minister Chidambaram, said, "There is money, there is food, but govt will not release them. Cry, my beloved country."

Before the speech, Congress chief Sonia Gandhi addressed the nation, In her video message, she urged citizens to stay indoors, be safe and observe the lockdown stipulations. She also extended her party's support in fighting the coronavirus. "Every Congress worker will support you," she said.

BJP president JP Nadda thanked Gandhi for same.

Modi's address

This is the fourth address to the nation in two months. Modi had addressed the nation twice on March 19 and March 24. In the first speech, he announced a ‘janta curfew’ on March 22, a Sunday, in a bid to fight the coronavirus. On March 24, he had announced the 21-day nationwide lockdown.

On April 3, Modi urged the public to display the country’s “collective resolve” to defeat the virus. He appealed to the citizens to switch off the lights at their homes and light up lamps, candles for nine minutes at 9 AM on April 5.

 

 

(With inputs from PTI)

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Published on April 14, 2020
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