Maharashtra Declares Coronavirus An Epidemic In Mumbai, Pune, Nagpur
The Maharashtra government has declared coronavirus an epidemic in Mumbai, Navi Mumbai, Pune, Pimpri-Chinchwad and Nagpur, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray said in the state assembly on Friday.
“The Maharashtra government has invoked the Epidemic Diseases Act with effect from midnight...” he said. “Wherever possible, companies should allow employees to work from home in view of coronavirus threat.”
As provided under the Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897:
- Schools, colleges in Pune, Pimpri-Chinchwad to remain closed until further orders.
- Wherever possible, private firms should allow employees to work from home.
- Theatres, gyms, swimming pools and public parks will be closed till March 30.
- People should also avoid visiting malls, hotels, restaurants, other crowded places.
- Social, political and religious events barred. Prior permissions stand cancelled.
- Bus and train services fall under essential services and cannot be stopped.
- People have been advised to curb unneccessary travel.
These decisions were taken as a precautionary measure, Thackeray said. "We will review the situation and take further decision," he said, adding that the virus was successfully contained in China's Wuhan after the city was virtually shut down.
The chief minister confirmed that 17 people in Maharashtra have contracted the virus, with 15 of them having a travel history to places such as Dubai, France and the U.S.
Ten of these patients are in Pune, three each in Mumbai and Nagpur, and one in Thane.
Four of the total 17 patients are in isolation wards at Kasturba Hospital in Mumbai, 10 are at Naidu Hospital in Pune and three at Government Medical College and Hospital in Nagpur. The symptoms they are showing are mild, and some of them have no symptoms at all, Thackeray said.
Isolation wards have been kept ready at district hospitals, government hospitals in urban areas and some private hospitals as well, the chief minister said.
Reining In The Virus
Indian officials have been in dialogue with private healthcare service providers on steps taken to contain and treat Covid-19, but the government hasn’t solicited their active participation as yet, according to heads of healthcare firms BloombergQuint spoke with on Friday.
Click here to find out what Biocon’s Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, Apollo Hospitals’ Sangeeta Reddy and Metropolis Healthcare’s Ameera Shah said about reining in the virus.
Eighty-one people in India have so far tested positive for coronavirus—declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization on Wednesday. One person has died due to Covid-19 in Karnataka while three have been cured in Kerala.
(With inputs from PTI)