‘Emerging 2nd Wave of COVID Will Have To Be Stopped’: PM Tells CMs
“Our confidence should not turn into overconfidence. Our success should not turn into negligence,” PM Modi said.
Amid the ongoing rise in coronavirus cases in India, Prime Minister Narendra Modi held a virtual meeting with the chief ministers of all states and Union territories on Wednesday, 17 March, and said that the emerging second wave of COVID-19 will have to be stopped immediately.
PM Modi said that quick and decisive steps will have to be taken to prevent the surge in several states.
“An emerging second wave of COVID-19 will have to be stopped immediately. We will have to take quick and decisive steps,” PM Modi told the chief ministers.
“Cases have suddenly started increasing in some states. The respective chief ministers have also expressed concern. The positivity rate in Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh is very high,” said PM Modi, adding that even as the vaccination drive is underway, some states have had to impose lockdowns in several districts.
“A rise is being seen in many districts that had protected themselves so far and were considered safe-zones. Seventy districts of the country have seen an increase of more than 150 percent in the last few weeks. If we don't stop it here, a situation of nationwide outbreak can come up,” he said.
‘Success Can’t Turn Into Negligence’
Pushing for more testing, PM Modi said that lesser testing in some districts and states needs to be looked into.
“It is a test of good governance. Our confidence should not turn into overconfidence. Our success should not turn into negligence,” he said.
The PM also called for increasing testing in smaller towns and checking the spread of the virus in villages.
Underlining the importance of RT-PCR tests, Modi said they should make for over 70 percent of overall testing, as he called out the states of Kerala, UP and Chhattisgarh for being 'overly dependent' on antigen tests.
PM Modi further praised the cooperation of the people of the country during the pandemic and said that they need to be thanked for it, but also need to be kept from panicking.
“We don't have to bring the public into panic mode. We don't have to bring a situation where there is an atmosphere of fear. We have to free the people of the difficulties by taking some precautions and initiatives,” he said.
PM Modi urged the chief ministers to actively take measures to stop the spread and keep it from becoming a concern for the nation.
“There is a need for us to become pro-active,” he said, adding that there should not be leniency in making containment zones and taking other measures.
‘Why is Vaccine Wastage Happening?’
On the issue of wastage of vaccine doses, he said, "(There's) over 10 percent vaccine wastage in Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. Vaccine wastage in UP is almost the same. It should be reviewed in states that why is vaccine wastage happening? Monitoring must be done every evening and proactive people should be contacted, so that there's no wastage."
Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh Bhupesh Baghel skipped the meeting.
West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee and Uttar Pradesh CM Yogi Adityanath also skipped the meeting due to the election campaigning in West Bengal and Assam, respectively.
The Union Health Ministry on Wednesday said that Maharashtra, Punjab, Karnataka, Gujarat, and Tamil Nadu continue to report a rise in COVID-19 cases on a daily basis, accounting for over 78 percent of the new cases.
(With inputs from PTI and ANI.)
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