COVID-19: P Chidambaram Urges Centre to ‘Order Lockdown of Cities’
Chidambaram hit out at the Centre for refusing to take the “logical step of a lockdown.”
As the number of coronavirus cases in India continues to rise, former finance minister P Chidambaram on Thursday, 19 March, urged the Centre to order an immediate lockdown across towns and cities for two to four weeks to contain the pandemic.
“After WHO Director General’s statement yesterday, there should be no hesitation in ordering an immediate lockdown of all our towns and cities for 2-4 weeks,” Chidambaram tweeted.
In another tweet, Chidambaram hit out at the Centre for refusing to take the “logical step of a lockdown” even after witnessing what is happening in Italy, Iran and Spain.
"Since ICMR’s random sample testing has revealed that there is no community transmission (Stage 3) so far, this is the moment to announce a temporary lockdown and contain the disease at Stage 2," Chidambaram further added.
Similar calls were made by a group of entrepreneurs and venture capitalists on Wednesday, who urged PM Modi to ban large gatherings under Section 144.
The Indian government has shut international borders and suspended incoming visas from affected countries in response to the pandemic.
The state governments have shut down public spaces, such as malls, cinemas, gyms and swimming pools and have urged citizens to refrain from partaking in large gatherings.
India has had a total of 169 confirmed coronavirus cases so far, including 25 foreign nationals, the Health Ministry has said on Thursday.
The global death toll from COVID-19 has crossed 8,000, with over 200,000 infections.
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