Urges opposition parties to give support for success of ‘Janta Curfew’ in the state
While presiding over the All Party meeting held here today Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur urged the leaders of all the political parties of the state to give their wholehearted support to the state government to check the spread of Coronavirus in the state.
Chief Minister said that government would deal the cases of hoardings and profiteering of essential commodities sternly. He said that the government has also decided to postpone the date of payment of various public utility bills like electricity, water etc. without any extra charges. He said that the state government would take strict action against the suspected persons who refrain from quarantine. He said that the state government has asked five manufacturers in the state for bulk manufacturing of sanitizers.
Jai Ram Thakur said that all the teachers were also being exempted from coming to school till 31st March, 2020. He said that only in case of any emergency, concerned Deputy Commissioners can requisite the services of teachers. He said that there was adequate stock of essential commodities in the state. He said that adequate sanitation kits were being made available to the doctors, para-medical staff, police personnel and sanitary workers.
Chief Minister said that Himachal Pradesh was the first state in the country to notify Himachal Pradesh Epidemic Disease (COVID-19) Regulation-2020 on 14th March, 2020 to tackle the menace of coronavirus effectively.
Jai Ram Thakur said that this disease has become an epidemic in most of the developed nations of the world. He said that even super powers like USA today have over 14000 cases of COVID-19. He said that till yesterday the state was fortunate that there were no positive case in the State. He said that two suspected cases have been found in the state from Kangra district yesterday, which was really a matter of concern. He said that both these samples have been sent to Pune for further investigations and verification. He said that the state now more vigilant to check the spread of this menace.
Chief Minister said that the state government has closed all educational institutions till 31st March as a preventive measure besides closing all the major temples in the state for general public. He said that the state government has also banned entry of tourists in the state. He said that the hoteliers associations of the state have also extended wholehearted support to the state government in this regard. He said a complete ban has been imposed on organising of any religious, cultural, political and social functions and gatherings in the state.
Jai Ram Thakur said that prices of masks and sanitizer have been fixed and hoarding of these essential commodities would be dealt sternly. He said that special stress has been laid on Information, Education and Communication (IEC) to sensitize the people so as to ensure that there was no panic among the people.
Chief Minister said that a mechanism would be developed soon to bring down the attendance of employees in major offices in the State so as to avoid overcrowding in these offices.
Jai Ram Thakur also urged the opposition parties to give their support to ensure the success of ‘Janta Curfew’ in the state to motivate the people to remain indoor on 22nd March, which would help in checking the spread of virus within the community. He said that this would break the chain of spread of the COVID-19 virus. He said that he has also personally spoken with all the MLAs of the state to give their full support to make the Janta Curfew a success. He said that keeping in view Janta Curfew on 22nd March, 2020 plying of buses has been suspended and all the Inter State Contract Carriage has been suspended from mid night of 21st March, 2020 till further orders.
Chief Minister said that State and District Nodal Officers have been appointed to monitor the situation and Helpline -104 was working round the clock. He said that isolation wards have been identified in various health institutions including all the Government Medical Colleges in state having adequate number of bed capacity.
Jai Ram Thakur said that three medical colleges of the state viz. IGMC Shimla, Dr. Rajendra Prasad Medical College Tanda in district Kangra and Ner Chowk Medical College in district Mandi has been identified for treatment of the positive patients. He said that Personal Protective Equipment including N-95 masks had been made available in all the districts and medical college hospitals. He said that the general public has been requested to avoid going to hospital for small ailments.
Chief Minister said that government reduced plying of interstate HRTC bus services to only 10 percent. He said that Intra State bus services of HRTC and private buses would be reduced by 50 percent. He also urged the people of the state to adopt social distancing and as much as possible even avoid family functions such as marriage parties etc. to check the spread of this virus.
Jai Ram Thakur said that the state government has banned the entry of domestic and foreign nationals in the state till further orders. He said that all the health officers and health personnel's are working with utmost dedication for the service of the people. He urged everyone to extend their full support to the Health Department to check COVID-19 and avoid assembling in large numbers.
State BJP President Dr Rajiv Bindal appreciated the efforts of the state government for taking effective and preventive steps to check spread of this menace in the state. He said that steps should be taken to properly sanitize public places. He said that ambulances must be properly sanitized besides creating buffer stock of ration and essential commodities.
Education Minister Suresh Bhardwaj said that Prime Minister has given a clarion call to the people of the country to observe ‘Janta Curfew’ in the country. He urged the representatives of political parties to give their wholehearted support to make this ‘Janta Curfew’ a success in the State.
State Congress President Kuldeep Rathore said that Congress party was with the state government at the time of distress. He also urged the state government to make availability of mask and sanitizers at affordable rate at fair price shops. He also suggested that strict vigil should be kept on borders to stop entry of people visiting from other states.
Leader of Opposition Mukesh Agnihotri said that special emphasis must be laid on checking entry of tourists and workers coming to Himachal Pradesh from neighbouring states. He also felt the need to provide adequate protective equipments to the doctors, para-medical staff and sanitary workers.
MLA CPM Rakesh Singha said in this war like situation it was vital to win the confidence of the people. He said that complete isolation should be ensured to check of this disease. He said that for this purpose, buildings should be identified to quarantine the people in case of major outbreak of the disease. He urged the state government to announce some relief to those sections of the society which have to work daily to make their both ends meet so that they could be motivated to stay at home.
CPM leader Sanjay Chauhan, BSP leader Suresh Saini, Kanshi Ram, CPI leader Roshan Lal Dogra also gave their valuable suggestions on the occasion.
Additional Chief Secretary Health R.D. Dhiman gave a detailed report regarding the steps being taken by the state government to check spread of this virus in the state.
Chief Secretary Anil Khachi, Director General of Police S.R. Mardi, Principal Secretary to the Chief Minister Sanjay Kundu, Secretaries Rajneesh and Devesh Kumar were also present on the occasion.