ENTIRE West Bengal under lockdown till end of March: CM Mamata Banerjee

BENGAL Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday, March 24 extended the ongoing lockdown in force in Kolkata and other urban areas of the state to the entire state till March 31 to contain the coronavirus outbreak.” After assessing the situation, it has been decided that the ongoing lockdown will be extended to the entire state from 5 pm today,” Banerjee told a press conference. The lockdown in Kolkata and several urban agglomerations had begun on Monday and was scheduled to continue till March 27. She urged people earlier to follow the guidelines set by the government and not to come out of their homes unless there is an emergency. Banerjee also asked them to cooperate with the government to fight this menace “The West Bengal Government is leaving no stone unturned to ensure safety & precautions for its citizens in combating COVID-19 efficiently. At this critical juncture, it is only collective efforts & public cooperation which can help fight this menace,” Banerjee wrote on her Twitter handle. “It is my sincere request to all the fellow citizens to abide by Government guidelines. Until and unless an emergency, please don’t step out of your homes. We will fight this together. Only we can help keep everyone around us safe,” the chief minister added. One elderly man died of coronavirus on Monday while six others were infected with it, a senior health official said.Meanwhile,Cabinet secretary Rajiv Gauba has written to chief secretaries of 19 states to ensure that lockdown is followed in letter and spirit and quoted the Sections 188, 270 and 271,and Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla had a review with directors-general of police of states, when he expressed concerns over the violations by residents despite a lockdown Bengal CM  has also announced to provide free ration for three months and some benefits to the workers engaged in the unorganized sector. Centre has warned of legal action against those violating the lockdown which has been enforced till March 31 to curtail the pandemic. The Indian Express says Bengal reported its first coronavirus-linked death on Monday taking India’s death toll in COVID-19 cases to eight. The 55-year-old man was admitted at a private hospital in Kolkata and was tested coronavirus positive on Saturday.

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