‘Are we waiting to overtake Brazil?’: Kumaraswamy demands 20-day lockdown
In a series of tweets, Kumaraswamy urged the PM not to put the economy ahead of peoples’ safety.Updated: Jun 23, 2020 20:26 IST
Janata Dal (Secular) leader and former Karnataka chief minister HD Kumaraswamy has urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to impose a further 20-day national lockdown as the current strategy of selective containment has ‘not served the purpose of arresting the pandemic.’
In a series of tweets, Kumaraswamy urged the PM not to put the economy ahead of peoples’ safety. Pointing out that India is among the countries with the highest number of Covid-19 cases, he said the problem must be seen in relation with our high density of population compared to other countries.
Stating that there has been a rapid increase in coronavirus cases following the lifting of the lockdown, the former CM questioned whether the country would passively wait to overtake Brazil in the number of those infected. Urging the Karnataka CM to immediately announce a 20-day lockdown ‘especially for Bengaluru’, Kumaraswamy urged the government to transfer cash of at least Rs 5,000 to all daily wage workers including cab and auto drivers apart from weavers.
Demanding that the government immediately withdraw its move to hold exams for SSLC (10th standard) students which is scheduled from Thursday, Kumaraswamy said that the state government and the education minister would be responsible if something untoward happened to the eight lakh students who are expected to take the exam.
“If neighbouring Telangana could promote all its 10th standard students why is Karnataka hesitating. If we are bent on holding the exams let that be conducted in October,” he said in a different tweet.
Kumaraswamy’s demand came in the backdrop of the state medical education minister Dr K Sudhakar acknowledging that three members of his family including his father, wife and daughter had tested positive for the virus.
Meanwhile, state health and family welfare minister B Sriramulu said that the government would consult with medical doctors and experts to decide on its next course of action.
“Yes, the number of cases in Bengaluru has increased. Yesterday the CM had a meeting in which it was decided to seal down four areas in Bengaluru which had seen an increase in cases. If required we will go for lockdown (across the state) again.”
On Tuesday, Karnataka registered 322 new Covid-19 cases taking the total to 9721 cases in the state which includes 150 deaths and 6,004 discharges. With 1,035 cases Bengaluru (rural and urban) account for nearly a third of the 3,563 active Covid-19 cases in the state.