In a big move on Wednesday, Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik announced that all government medical professionals including doctors and other healthcare staff will be paid a 4-month advance salary (for the months of April, May, June, and July). The salary will be paid in April. Patnaik lauded the contribution of the healthcare professionals who were at the forefront of fighting the novel coronavirus crisis. He also directed the police to take strict action against anyone obstructing or misbehaving with the medical professionals.
So far, there are 584 active COVID-19 cases in India. On the other hand, two confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus have been detected in Odisha. Patnaik has already donated his three months’ salary to the CM Relief Fund for helping the individuals affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. He also issued an appeal for donation to the CM Relief Fund. The Odisha CM has also pledged his MLA-LAD funds for the prevention of novel coronavirus in his constituency Hinjili.
CM @Naveen_Odisha has donated his three months’ salary to CMRF #COVID19 Fund to help those affected by the pandemic, reiterating that extraordinary circumstance demands extraordinary response. CM has appealed all to donate generously to provide humanitarian help to the affected.— CMO Odisha (@CMO_Odisha) March 23, 2020
As #Odisha prepares to face the #COVID19 pandemic, appeal all to contribute towards humanitarian aid for #CoronaVirus affected people & their families. Let us do our bit by contributing to CMRF-COVID19 via https://t.co/ujyMeJJpBo#IndiaFightsCorona pic.twitter.com/fqMS9bhCrd— CMO Odisha (@CMO_Odisha) March 25, 2020
The Odisha government has taken a lot of steps to tackle the novel coronavirus crisis. For instance, all educational institutions except for examination centres, cinema halls, swimming pools, and gyms were closed down till March 31. Initially, the state government ordered a lockdown of only 5 districts and 8 major towns which was later extended to all 30 districts. This was superseded by the nationwide lockdown declared by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday.