The Chairman of Parliamentary standing committee on Transport, Tourism, and Culture, TG Venkatesh, on Monday, wrote a letter to Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways, Nitin Gadkari, about the problems relating to the lockdown of the National Highways due to Coronavirus pandemic.
In his letter, Venkatesh stated that stopping vehicles on National Highways would lead to more problems."All ports are running, ships are coming and going with cargo, some cargo flights are also running. Indian railways are also running goods trains. For all these, the linkage will be national highways, if the link is stopped, all the systems will be jeopardized and the economy will come to a standstill."
"Yesterday's blockade of transportation on national highways has created a lot of problems, particularly to all the villages across the national highways," he added
TG Venkatesh also urged the Union Minister to inform state governments to not stop transportation on national highways. "I request you to advise all state governments to act accordingly as it is important to transport essential goods from one place to another place," read the letter.
India has so far reported 420 positive cases of Coronavirus and seven people have been reported dead due to the deadly COVID-19. Multiple states across the country have taken up measures to contain the spread of the virus and have ordered a complete lockdown at least till March 31, with an extension likely.
Numerous states have announced lockdowns till at least March 31, suspending all public transport services and non-essential services. The state governments were advised to issue appropriate orders to allow only essential services to operate in the 75 districts which have reported confirmed cases or casualties relating to COVID 19. India has also suspended all visas, barring for a few categories such as diplomatic and employment apart from keeping in abeyance the visa-free travel facility to OCI cardholders till April 15.
(With inputs from ANI)