Speaking exclusively to Republic TV on Saturday, Mumbai Mayor Kishori Pednekar spoke about the measures to combat the novel coronavirus crisis. Acknowledging Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Janta Curfew call on Sunday, she maintained that it was necessary to take precautions till at least March 31. While mentioning that 75% of the citizens had followed the advisories, she lamented that some people were still not listening to advice and keeping private offices open. Pednekar advised people to stay at home for complete protection. She also revealed the arrangements to quarantine suspected COVID-19 patients.
Kishori Pednekar remarked, “We look at the situation in the world. In Italy, the people are facing a big crisis as the situation was not handled well. So, I feel that we will work by keeping a distance. Honourable Modiji has called for a one-day curfew tomorrow. If we take precautions until March 31, then we will be able to reduce the coronavirus crisis. But, if the citizens do not listen and private offices are kept open, I feel that this is wrong. This is a global crisis. If we follow precautions, many people can be saved. If you want to be protected, it is necessary to stay at home. We can be saved from coronavirus if we implement basic norms such as washing hands first before eating something. 75% of the citizens have followed the directives.”
She added, “The owners of 5-star hotels have started giving 50% concessions. They are close to the airport. We have kept the Seven Hills Hospital open. All private hospitals have reserved 100 beds. Everyone knows that there is no medicine to treat it. So, we have to take precautions. The BMC Commissioner is taking a lot of initiatives. Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and Health Minister Rajesh Tope are themselves handling the situation. So, it is the responsibility of the citizens to follow all the instructions that are coming.”
On Friday, Uddhav Thackeray declared the closure of all workplaces from the midnight of March 20 until March 31 amid the novel coronavirus outbreak. This would be applicable in Mumbai, Mumbai Metropolitan Region, Pune, Pimpri Chinchwad, and Nagpur. The government offices will operate at 25% attendance.
As per the amended BMC order, port, electricity, petroleum, oil, energy, media, IT services provided to any of the essential services and production processes which require continuity of process have been added to the list of establishments that are exempted from the 50% work from home rule in Mumbai. Additionally, gyms, swimming schools, theatres, schools, colleges and malls in Mumbai are shut. Meanwhile, the BMC has permitted hotels to function on the condition that there will be only 50% occupancy and a distance of three feet will have to be maintained between two customers.