Central teams to monitor situation in 4 States
Rajasthan, Maharashtra, M.P. and Bengal in list; Mamata demands to know criteria used to put select districts under watch
- The violation of the lockdown measures posed a serious health hazard to the public and risked a spread of the infection.
- The situation was serious in Indore, Jaipur, Mumbai and Pune. In West Bengal, Kolkata, Howrah, Medinipur East, 24 Parganas North, Darjeeling, Kalimpong and Jalpaiguri districts had troubling situations.
- A Ministry order listed the violations by the States: incidents of violence on front line healthcare professionals; complete violation of social distancing norms outside banks, PDS shops, market places; and movement of private and commercial vehicles with passengers in urban areas.
- The Centre has constituted six Inter-Ministerial Central Teams (IMCT) — led by an official of Additional Secretary rank and including public health specialists — under the Disaster Management Act, 2005 to make on-the-spot assessment of the situation, issue necessary directions to the State authorities and submit reports.
- West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee twitted that the Centre’s decision was not consistent with the spirit of federalism. We welcome all constructive support and suggestions, especially from the Central Govt in negating the #Covid19 crisis.
- The purpose is to provide support and assistance to the States in their endeavour to combat COVID-19. The teams have been carefully constituted so that support can be provided from the health, administrative and disaster management aspects. The States will benefit.
- The Ministry order said the logistic support, accommodation, local transportation and personal protective equipment (PPE) and access to documents and records should be provided by the State governments.
- The Ministry revised its guidelines issued under the Disaster Management Act, 2005, to allow the States to decide on the additional public activities to be allowed from April 20 in non-hotspot zones. It said the additional facilities should be based on strict compliance with the existing guidelines.