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Consider lockdowns as last resort, PM Modi tells states

New Delhi, Apr 20 (MNN) Amid a surge in coronavirus cases in India, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday appealed to the states to consider lockdowns as the last resort to tackle the situation and instead focus on containment zones only.

“In this crisis situation, we should take all steps to tackle coronavirus. Davai bhi, kadai bhi. We should never forget this message even after getting vaccinated,” he said.

“I assure that with your patience and discipline, India will not leave any stone unturned in tackling the corona pandemic,” the Prime Minister said in his address to the nation this evening.

He said that the Centre, state governments and the private sector were all trying to ensure supply of oxygen to hospitals as the demand was shooting up.

“Efforts are on at variyus levels to increase the production of medical oxygen, Modi said.

He reminded the audience that as the corona cases shot up across the country, the Indian pharmaceutical sector increased the manufacture of drugs.

“Compared with January and February, at present, much more production of medicines is being witnessed. Yesterday, I had a meeting with leaders of the pharma companies to increase drug production. We are fortunate that our country has a strong pharma sector which is fast and efficient in producing medicines,” the Prime Minister said.

Modi also assured that the government was also trying to increase the hospitals beds for the treatment of corona patients.

He recalled that when the pandemic broke out last year, India began to tackle the virus. “Our researchers worked day and night to develop corona vaccine. The cheapest vaccine in the whole world is available in India.”

He also said that the government had fast-tracked the regulatory and approval processes related to the production of the vaccines.
The world’ largest immunisation drive has been made possible through ‘made in India’ vaccine,” Modi said.

The fastest milestones of vaccination of 10 crore, 11 crore, and 12 crore vaccinations was achieved by India, he added.

“Yesterday, we decided that those above the age of 18 will get vaccines from May 1. Half of the vaccines will be given to states and hospitals.”

The Prime Minister said that the pandemic position earlier when the pandemic broke out was different. “What was the situation earlier on? Inadequate labs, hospitals, PPEs, no information on virus. In few months, we redressed the situation,” Modi added.

“Today, we have large number of PPEs; testing capacity is getting increased constantly. The credit goes to all of you for fighting the pandemic through discipline and patience. The country has come to this stage due to your cooperation,” the Prime Minister said.

He appealed to the people to come forward and help the needy.
“We should take a pledge to help fight the pandemic. Youths should go to apartments in small teams and get enforced the health protocols so that states don’t have to order lockdown and declare containment zones.

“To increase public awareness, children helped a lot earlier on and spread the message of cleanliness. I again appeal to the children to create such an atmosphere at homes that no one ventures out unless necessary,” Modi added.

“Today is the seventh day of Ramzan which gives us the message of self-discipline, which is required now. Go out of your houses only when necessary. Follow the health protocols,” Modi added.

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