No lockdown beyond June 7 if cases reduce, says Karnataka CM BS Yediyurappa | Bengaluru News – Times of India

BENGALURU: A week after the state government extended the lockdown till June 7, chief minister BS Yediyurappa said on Saturday that further curbs may not be needed if people strictly follow rules and there is a decline in Covid-19 infections by then.
“The government has been trying its best to control the situation. Covid cases are already dipping and we are hoping the situation will be better in another 4-5 days,” the CM said after a three-hour meeting with legislators and public representatives from Mysuru, Hassan, Belagavi, Kalaburagi and Vijayapura districts, which have a high caseload. “Extending or not extending lockdown depends on the number of cases and positivity rate by then.”
The state reported 20,628 cases and 492 deaths on Saturday, taking the daily positivity rate to 15% and the case fatality rate to 2.4%. At the video conference, Yediyurappa appealed to elected representatives and officials to strive hard to curb the spread of the virus in the districts, and particularly in rural areas. “You must ensure that the positivity rate drops below 10% in another week in all these districts,” he said.
The government is walking a tightrope on the curbs, weighing relaxation against an increase in cases in the districts, and continuation against the potential adverse effects on revenue as Bengaluru contributes more than half of the state’s collection.
While deputy CM and head of the state’s Covid task force, CN Ashwath Narayan said a decision would be taken in 4-5 days, cooperation minister ST Somashekhar, who is incharge of Mysuru, opposed extension of the lockdown. “I don’t see the necessity to extend the lockdown after June 7 as cases are coming down drastically. The extension will further hurt the working class who are already badly hit,” Somashekhar said.
Echoing the CM on taking a decision around June 7, home minister Basavaraj Bommai said curbs may have to be continued if the number of cases doesn’t drop. “Situation can come under control only if the positivity drops below 10%… The death rate and daily caseload should also come down drastically. Only then we can manage the situation with the existing health infrastructure,” he said.
The government had initially announced 14 days of closure from April 27 but later imposed a complete lockdown from May 10 to May 24 as the cases climbed. The lockdown was then extended till June 7 as experts said it was yielding results. On Thursday, the Centre directed states to continue Covid-19 guidelines till June 30 and asked them to go for intensive and local containment measures in districts with high case burden.

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Sagar Biswas

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