MUMBAI: Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Friday said that restrictions in the areas marked as red zones will not be eased even after the coronavirus lockdown ends on May 3.

Addressing a press briefing, Uddhav said, “The areas marked as Red zones will be under strict observation even after lockdown ends on May 3. The Red zones will not open. This means Mumbai, Pune & Nagpur cities which have seen a rise in COVID-19 cases will not be opened after lockdown ends on May 3.”

Maharashtra Chief Minister said the state stands firm in battling the COVID-19 pandemic. Answering queries about what will happen after May 3, the day the national lockdown is set to end, he said the ”priority of the government is to save lives.” 

“We will surely give relaxations after May 3 seeing the condition of specific areas but be cautious and co-operate, else whatever we have achieved in the past few days will be lost. So, we will go ahead with patience and caution,” Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray said through a video conferencing.

The Shiv Sena chief also urged the people of Maharashtra ”not to panic” and expressed hope by saying “we are going to win this war with your help.’’

“I want people to not panic about COVID-19. It’s only about starting the treatment on time. From few days old babies to 83 years old people have recovered and gone home. People on ventilators have also recovered well,” the Maharashtra Chief Minister said.

Calling lockdown as a ”speed breaker”, Uddhav said that without it coronavirus COVID-19 figures would have been very high.

The CM assured that his government would do everything to help those stranded in other states.

“For sending people of other states to their homes and bringing ours back, there is a system. One needs to follow rules and guidelines. Do not rush and make a crowd. It will be in the process.  If panic and indiscipline persists then we may withdraw the permission,’’ he warned.

He added that his government is taking good care of all policemen who have been tested positives. Out of total positive cases, 75-80% are mild or very mild cases. We have done nearly 2 Lakh testing, he said.

Maharashtra remains the worst-affected state with 9,915 cases and 432 deaths. 1593 people have been cured and discharged in the state. (Latest update by the state health department puts the number of confirmed cases at 10,498 and death toll at 459).

Gujarat is just behind Maharashtra in terms of both the number of cases and fatalities. As per the data provided by the Union Health Ministry, 4,082 people are confirmed to have contracted the virus while 197 succumbed to the disease. (As per latest state govt data, 4395 cases and 214 deaths are confirmed in Gujarat).

State of Madhya Pradesh recorded 65 more COVID-19 cases, taking the state`s tally of coronavirus cases to 2,625. According to the state Health Department, the tally is inclusive of 137 patients who have lost their lives to the highly contagious virus.

Today is the thirty-eighth day of India’s nationwide lockdown, which has been extended till May 3. The Centre on Wednesday hinted that the ongoing nationwide lockdown is likely to be extended beyond May 3 but many districts will “considerable relaxations” from restrictions.

The nationwide lockdown was first announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on March 24 in a bid to combat the coronavirus threat. The 21-day lockdown which ended on April 14 was further extended till May 3.

By user