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Opinion

At PM Modi’s review meeting on Covid-19, Amit Shah sets a 3-point target for CMs

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Union Interior Minister Amit Shah on Tuesday called on top ministers from all Union states and territories to witness an increase in coronavirus disease cases to ensure that the Covid-19 death rate drop below 1% and the positivity rate below 5%. Shah made the request at a virtual review meeting held by Prime Minister Narendra Modi with the top ministers of these states and Union territories.

The most important step Shah told the CMs was to make the containment zones dynamic. Officials must visit the red zones every week and, based on the data collected, change the status of a particular area, he said. Currently, data from buffer zones is collected biweekly. The Union Interior Minister called on senior ministers to do their best to ensure that all three goals are achieved as soon as possible.

The meeting comes at a time when India’s Covid-19 count has passed 9.17 million. On Monday, the Supreme Court gave states and central governments two days to reveal their readiness to combat the spike in infections and the expected increase in cases in the coming months. A bench of three judges headed by Judge Ashok Bhushan was particularly concerned about the situation in Delhi, Maharashtra, Gujarat and Assam.

At the Covid-19 review meeting, Delhi Prime Minister Arvind Kejriwal told the Prime Minister that pollution caused by burning stubble in neighboring states played a key role in the high severity of the third wave of Covid-19 in the national capital. Delhi saw a peak of 8,600 Covid-19 cases on Nov. 10 in the third peak after which the cases and the positivity rate are steadily declining, it reported.

Kejriwal sought Modi’s intervention to get rid of pollution in the city due to burning stubble. He also called for the reservation of 1,000 additional ICU beds in central government-run hospitals in Delhi for coronavirus patients until the third wave of infection lasts in the capital.

Speaking about the situation in West Bengal, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said that people in the state have become ignorant of the viral infection and stopped following protocols such as wearing masks. He added that people here believe that the Covid-19 pandemic is over. Only in the North 24 district of Parganas do people wear masks, while in Bankura no one is seen taking precautions.

During the meeting, Banerjee also requested that the Center settle state goods and services tax (GST) quotas. She was the only one who raised the issue.

Other leaders who attended the meeting included Health Minister Harsh Vardhan, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel, and Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani.

The first round of the match is over. During the second round, Prime Minister Modi and the senior ministers will discuss the vaccination strategy, after which the prime minister is likely to issue a final statement.

Original source

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