Welcoming the 21-day lockdown amid the Coronavirus pandemic, Congress MP P Chidambaram, on Tuesday, said that every citizen must support the lockdown, but said that the PM's address made him feel relief, vindication, frustration, disappointment, worry, fear etc. Questioning the delay in announcing a financial package to tackle Coronavirus, he asked 'who will provide cash to the poor that they need for the next 21 days?'. He also added that those who mocked a lockdown must remain silent for the next 21 days.
The right thing to do is for every citizen to support the lockdown whatever may be the hardships.— P. Chidambaram (@PChidambaram_IN) March 24, 2020
Amid the rising Coronavirus cases in India, PM Modi, on Tuesday, announced a 21-day curfew throughout India starting at midnight on Tuesday. He said that 21 days were necessary for breaking the transmission cycle of the pandemic. The 21-day curfew is applicable to all states, districts, and villages - irrespective of whether they are currently under curfew or not. Currently, India's positive cases stand at 519, with ten deaths.
"From midnight 12, across the country, there will be countrywide lockdown in India. There will be a complete restriction of leaving out from the residence. All districts, villages will be locked down. This is curfew only -a stricter curfew than Janta curfew. We have to bear economic consequences because of this. But to save every Indian's life at this time is my and the government's responsibility," said PM Modi.
Stating that while India's economy will face a brunt, PM Modi said it was this responsibility to do this to save every Indian's life. Talking about how health experts stated that 21 days are necessary to ensure breaking the chain transmission, he said these 21 days were most crucial. Explaining the fallout for not handling the next three weeks as catastrophic, he said that 'India will be set back by 21 years if 21 days are not handled'.
All offices of the government barring for those providing essential services will remain shut. They will function with a minimum number of employees. Hospitals and all medical establishments will be open and the transport of the people working in this field will be permitted. All commercial establishments and private organizations will be closed. The exemptions include print and electronic media, shops selling essential items, e-delivery of food, medical equipment, banks, petrol pumps etc. The suspension of transport and hospitality services shall continue.