Lockdown was necessary, but Delhi prepared to ease restrictions: Kejriwal
'We have made a suggestion to Cente that all containment zones should remain sealed. Rest can be green zones and shops can be opened there on an odd-even basis,' says Delhi CM
New Delhi: Announcing an ease in the lockdown restrictions, Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal on Sunday said that it was time to re-open Delhi. He said that Delhi will implement relaxations that have been allowed by the union home ministry.
This comes as the third phase of lockdown is set to be implemented from Monday across the country. Delhi has one of the highest number of cases of Covid-19 in the country with over 4,000 positive cases. The government has sealed off 97 areas as containment zones while five zones have been de-contained.
“The central government list has listed all districts in Delhi as red. When the lockdown was imposed, it was necessary to prepare our healthcare facilities to tackle the challenge of the disease. Delhi is ready to relax the lockdown restrictions. We will have to be ready to live with coronavirus," Kejriwal said while addressing a digital press conference.
He said that while the lockdown was necessary, the time has come to open up as the economy was suffering due to the extended period of shutdown. He said that a large number of people will be forced to move out of Delhi If the lockdown continues.
“We have made a suggestion to the central government that all containment zones should remain sealed. Rest can be green zones and shops can be opened there on an odd-even basis. There will be an increase in the number of cases but with the lockdown, we are prepared to handle that," Kejriwal added.
Delhi, along with the rest of the country has been under a lockdown since 25 March. There are approximately 40,000 positive cases of the disease in the country.
Announcing the relaxations, Kejriwal said that the relaxations will be on the basis of what had been allowed by the central home ministry. All government offices will open on Monday with those providing emergency services functioning at 100% capacity and those in non-essential work functioning at 50% capacity. Private offices can also open but at 33% of the workforce.
Self-employed people like electricians, plumbers and household help can begin work but barbers and salons will continue to remain closed. Markets excepts shops providing essential services will also remain closed. There will be no movement of people for non-essential work from 7pm to 7am.
Public transport vehicles will not be allowed to ply in red zones. Private four-wheelers can have two people in the backseat along with the driver while only driver is allowed on two wheelers.
Even as religious places remain shut, 50 people were allowed at weddings and 20 at funerals. E-commerce deliveries will be allowed for all essential goods.