‘How do you enforce lockdown and open shops?’ asks Mamata Banerjee
Mamata Banerjee said there was a lack of clarity between what the Central government says and its directives.Updated: Apr 27, 2020 22:26 IST
West Bengal Chief Minister Banerjee on Monday accused the Centre of making contradictory statements about the enforcement of the lockdown and said there should be greater clarity on the Union home ministry’s order on reopening shops.
“On the one hand they lockdown should be strictly maintained on the other hand they’re saying to open all shops. What should we do? There is a lack of clarity between what the Central government is saying and their directives,” she said at a briefing at the state secretariat according to ANI.
Banerjee who was among the chief ministers who did not get to speak at the video conference with Prime Minister Narendra Modi Monday morning, said her government was in favour of the lockdown.
“If you open shops, how would you enforce lockdown? I think the Centre should come out with a clarification,” Banerjee said.
She also said that the Centre should consult states before releasing circulars.
“Central government is releasing circulars all of a sudden. I don’t have any problem with it but there must be some consultation. They should have asked the position of states,” she said.
The lockdown to contain the spread of coronavirus is scheduled to end on May 3 but a few chief ministers want it extended. West Bengal has so far reported 696 cases of Covid-19.
Last week, Banerjee clashed with the Centre over the visit of two Inter-Ministerial Central Teams (IMCTs) to Bengal to oversee the state government’s efforts in the containment zones in teh fight against Covid-19.
While the central teams complained that they did not get support in accessing hospitals and that local officials refused to accompany them, the ruling Trinamool Congress accused the two Central teams of spreading a “political virus” in the name of assessing the coronavirus containment efforts on the ground.