Delhi lockdown extended by one more week: Kejriwal
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‘Don’t want to lose the gain made in the last few days’
Amid a good recovery and sharp fall in daily new Covid19 infections, the national capital Delhi will continue to be under lockdown till May 24, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said on Sunday.
This will be the fourth time Delhi will extend its week-long lockdown since April 20, when the initial lockdown was introduced in the wake of a surge in Covid cases in the capital.
It may be recalled that Covid cases started rising in Delhi from the last week of March. The daily new infections, which had surpassed the 5,000- mark in the first week of April, touched 28,000 levels as of April 20, prompting the Delhi government to announce immediate restrictions to break the transmission of the virus in the national capital.
After the initial six-day curfew till April 26, the lockdown was extended till May 3, followed by another extension until May 10, another extension until May 17 and now extended till May 24.
Delhi is now going for a lockdown extension even as the daily Covid new infections have fallen to a level of 6,456 as of Sunday with less than 10 per cent positivity rate.
“We have been witnessing good recovery following the lockdown. Corona cases have been on a decline. We don’t want to lose the gain that we have made in the last few days. Therefore, we are extending the lockdown for one more week. Instead of tomorrow, lockdown is extended till next Monday 5 AM in Delhi “, Kejriwal said.
After a month, Delhi’s daily Covid cases dipped below the 10,000-mark again on Friday at 8,506 new cases, with medical experts attributing the lockdown as the main reason behind the dip in new cases amid the ongoing second wave.
Delhi Covid-19 numbers
The daily Covid19 new infections for the 24 hours to Sunday inched up to 6,456 from 6,430 in the previous day. The daily test positivity rate cane down to 10.40 per cent from 11.32 per cent.
The daily Covid-19 deaths fell to 262 on Sunday from 337 on the previous day.
As many as 1,18,087 beneficiaries got vaccinated in the 24 hours to Sunday, the latest Delhi State Health Bulletin showed. The number of tests conducted stood at 62,059 on Sunday. However, the cumulative positivity rate continued to be a worrying factor at 7.62 per cent. To date, the total fatalities in the national capital since the beginning of the pandemic last year stood at 21,506, according to official data. The number of active cases stood at 62,783 cases.
Traders’ body hails decision
Meanwhile, the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) hailed the Delhi government decision to extend the lockdown, stating that it was a prudent decision. However, the number of new cases were on the decline. There are about 15 lakh traders in Delhi who are employing more than 35 lakh people.
CAIT Secretary General Praveen Khandelwal also urged the Delhi Chief Minister to give financial assistance to traders since their shops and markets are closed, and there is no inflow of money. In contrast, they would continue to see establishment expenses like salary of employees, electricity, payment of EMIs, interest on loans etc.
He asserted that traders were fully justified in seeking financial assistance from the government as they had effectively played the role of tax collectors for the government.