Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Sunday said industries based in green and orange coronavirus zones of the state will be allowed to resume operations from April 20, but in a restricted manner.
In a video message, he also said that industries which are ready to provide accommodation to their workers during the lockdown will be given food grain supply and permission for raw material from the state.
“We have to turn this Artha Chakra (stuck wheel of the chariot of economy) from April 20,” Thackeray said.
“The state government is allowing the industries from green and orange zones to start production and processing activities in a restricted manner. The industries will have to arrange the accommodation for their workers. They would not travel long distance for work, he said.
Green zones are the areas which have not reported any coronavirus case, while orange zones are the ones where only a few such cases have been reported.
Thackeray said borders of all districts would remain sealed and only essential services movement will be allowed.
“There are no restrictions on movement of agriculture produce and farm equipment. All the essential items will remain exempted from the lockdown restrictions, he said.
The chief minister also said his government will take care of all migrant labourers in the state.
“I urge them to stay here till the lockdown is in force. I will take care of their food. Once the lockdown is over, I will ensure they reach their homes safely,” he said.
Till Saturday, the state reported 3,648 coronavirus cases and 211 deaths.
Thackeray also urged people not hide any coronavirus- like symptoms.
“Almost 75 per cent of COVID-19 patients are asymptomatic, which is a good sign. There are dedicated fever, cough and cold clinics in the state. People should go there for check-ups without any hesitation,” he said.
The chief minister said he has spoken to doctors in Mumbai and they are ready to open their clinics to provide medical help to patients not having the coronavirus disease.
“I think doctors elsewhere in the state could also follow suit,” he said.
On people donating to the PM-CARES Fund instead of the chief minister’s relief fund, Thackeray said, there are people who wish to help the state in various ways. I am not at all interested in the politics of it.”
He said almost 80 per cent of the poor in the state have received the subsidised food grains.
“The Centre is only providing rice for free. We have demanded wheat and pulses also from the Centre. Once we get it, we will supply it to all the needy people, he said.
Thackeray said the state government has started a separate bank account for those who wish to contribute CSR funds to fight coronavirus.
The Prime Minister’s Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations Fund (PM-CARES Fund) was set up on March 28 to raise money for combating the COVID-19 crisis and to provide relief to the affected.