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Karnataka mulls COVID lockdown extension; no decision yet

The Karnataka government had initially announced 14 days "close down" from April 27, but subsequently imposed a complete lockdown from May 10 to May 24, as the cases continued to spike

Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa

Discussions are on regarding extending the lockdown in Karnataka, but no decision has been taken yet on the matter, Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa said on Monday, as the State battles the second wave of COVID-19. "I'm discussing it, will let you know....no decision has been taken yet...," Yediyurappa told reporters in response to a question on extending the lockdown and announcing a package.

Though the state is currently under complete lockdown till May 24, several leaders, including ministers, have expressed themselves in favour of extending it.

The Karnataka government had initially announced 14 days "close down" from April 27, but subsequently imposed a complete lockdown from May 10 to May 24, as the cases continued to spike.

Revenue Minister, R Ashoka, also Vice-Chairman of Karnataka State Disaster Management Authority, who has been batting for the extension of curbs, today said lockdown has been useful as daily fresh cases in Bengaluru have come down from 22,000 to 8,000 and it will be good to extend the shutdown.

Noting that because of lockdown, the number of daily cases have come down in Maharashtra and Delhi too, he said, three days before the current shutdown ends, senior ministers will meet under the leadership of the Chief Minister and take a decision.

Mines and Geology Minister Murugesh Nirani too said, it will be good if lockdown is extended for some more days.

Health Minister K Sudhakar, in response to a question about extending the restrictions, said it will be discussed at the meeting chaired by the Chief Minister.

Union Minister Sadananda Gowda too recently had said lockdown has to be extended if need be, as it has been yielding results, with major cities including Bengaluru witnessing decline in daily COVID positive cases.

Meanwhile, the Congress and JD(S) have urged the state government to provide relief, including financial and food, and come to the rescue of those whose livelihood has been affected by the COVID-19 induced shutdown.

JD(S) leader H D Kumaraswamy today urged the government that the lockdown, if extended, should be "pro bono", where economic and food relief to the needy is taken care of.

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