Union home minister Amit Shah (PTI)
NEW DELHI: Union home minister Amit Shah on Thursday spoke to all chief ministers on the lockdown enforced to contain the spread of Covid-19 amid indications that states will continue to have a major say in deciding the curbs and opening-up measures. Shah is said to have elicited the CMs’ views on the way ahead after the fourth phase of the lockdown ends on May 31.
There has been speculation over Lockdown 5.0 but discussions are still on. The negative list, barring activities in areas with high incidence of the disease, is expected to be further pruned. In the past, PM Narendra Modi has consulted the CMs.
It is felt that it will take another week to 10 days for a fuller assessment of the impact of migration of lakhs of workers to their home states in recent weeks. This will be a key factor going ahead though the graded exit seems likely to continue. Home minister Amit Shah’s discussions with chief ministers are likely to shape the Centre’s anti-coronavirus strategy in the days ahead.
Sources indicated that the Centre may essentially leave it to states/Union Territories to decide on the curbs postMay 31, barring a limited “national” list of prohibited activities such as international passenger flights and reopening of schools and colleges. Amit Shah’s consultation with chief ministers comes against the backdrop of the cabinet secretary holding a meeting with chief secretaries earlier in the day to review the situation.
The meeting was attended by municipal commissioners and district magistrates of 13 worst-affected locations, including Mumbai, Chennai, Delhi/New Delhi, Ahmedabad, Kolkata/Howrah, Indore, Jaipur, Jodhpur, Chengalpattu and Thiruvallur.