Maharashtra government has once again extended the lockdown in the state to curb the spread of coronavirus pandemic. The restrictions will now stay in place till May 31.
Maharashtra had restricted public mobility and several other activities in April as the state became a hotbed of COVID-19 infections amid the second wave of the pandemic. The restrictions were supposed to end at 7 am on May 1. But as cases continued to rise, these restricions were extended till May 15.
After its Cabinet meeting on Wednesday, the state government decided to continue the lockdown till the end of this month. All existing restrictions will continue to apply during this period. This means non-essential establishments, private offices and shops selling other than essential goods will continue to remain closed.
During the Cabinet meeting, the Maharashtra government approved Maharashtra Mission Oxygen project, aimed at making the state self-sufficient in oxygen production under which special incentives will be offered to manufacturers.
The programme is meant to ensure a production of 3,000 metric tonnes of oxygen per day in the state, said a statement from the Chief Minister's Office. At present the production capacity in the state is 1,300 metric tonnes per day while the demand is 1,800 metric tonnes on account of coronavirus pandemic.
Maharashtra, as well as several other states, have imposed lockdowns or similar restrictions as the country battles a severe second wave of the coronavirus. India saw a record rise in COVID-19 deaths with 4,205 fresh fatalities taking the country's death toll to 2,54,197, while 3,48,421 new coronavirus infections were reported, according to the Union Health Ministry data updated on Wednesday. The total tally of COVID-19 cases in country now stands at 2,33,40,938.
The active cases have reduced to 37,04,099 comprising 15.87 per cent of the total infections, while the national COVID-19 recovery rate has improved to 83.04 per cent, the data updated at 8 am showed. The number of people who have recuperated from the disease surged to 1,93,82,642 while the case fatality rate was recorded at 1.09 per cent, the data stated.
The 4,205 new fatalities include 793 from Maharashtra, 480 from Karnataka, 347 from Delhi, 301 from Uttar Pradesh, 298 from Tamil Nadu, 214 from Punjab, 199 from Chhattisgarh, 169 from Rajasthan, 144 from Haryana, 132 from West Bengal, 118 each from Gujarat and Uttarakhand, 108 from Andhra pradesh and 103 from Jharkhand.
A total of 2,54,197 deaths have been reported so far in the country including 77,191 from Maharashtra, 20,010 from Delhi, 19,852 from Karnataka, 16,178 from Tamil Nadu, 16,043 from Uttar Pradesh, 12,593 from West Bengal, 10,941 from Chhattisgarh and 10,918 from Punjab.