Nagpur: Delegation led by Dipen Agrawal convener of Sarkar Jagao Vanijya Bachao Sangharsh Samiti (SJVBSS), a conglomerate of most affected sectors of economy by the unwarranted and frequent lockdown/curbs imposed by local/state administration, met Radhakrishnan B. (IAS), Hon’ble Nagpur Municipal Commissioner to impress up on him to take a holistic decision in the best interest of business entities and employees facing existential crisis due to frequent lockdowns.
Dipen Agrawal, convener of Sangharsh Samiti, said that due to frequent lockdowns citizens indulging in theft to meet the both ends for themselves and their family. In this backdrop it is surprising to note that administration is sensitive to minor spike in positive cases, but it is not that sensitive to the misery of citizens and the hardship they are facing due to lockdown imposed by local administration, state and union governments time to time. Instead of imposing curbs or lockdown administration should step-up surveillance to ensure that citizens follow covid appropriate behaviour and at the same time review healthcare infrastructure having regard to experience of last two waves.
Dilip Kamdar, co-convener of Sangharsh Samiti informed that even after Nagpur being qualified under Level-1 as per state government order dated 4th June 2021 the economic activities resumed belatedly. Bars & Restaurants were initially permitted to operate till 4.00 pm thereafter till 8.00 pm and from August 2021 till 11 pm but with 50% capacity. The mangal karyalay and lawn owners were permitted to resume partial decent operations only in the month of August 2021 with limited guest. However, entertainment industry is not permitted to effectively resume operations till to date.
Micky Arora, coordinator of Sangharsh Samiti said that even after the recent two-digit positive cases being reported for last three consecutive days the weekly positivity rate of Nagpur district is 0.22%, which is far below the caution mark of 5% set by state government. Present 66 active cases speaks’ loud and clear that ample oxygen beds are available in district. It is important to mention that only 6 new positive cases (in single digit) were reported on 8th September 2021. Arora further said that Union government has termed Test, Track, Treat, Vaccinate and Covid Appropriate Behaviour as five pillars to contain corona virus. On lines of surveillance standards adopted by immigration department at places of entry in country, state and local administration should do the needful.
The delegation requested Radhakrishnan B., Municipal Commissioner that after weekly review of pandemic situation be pleased to recommend further opening up of economic activities instead of curtailing of working hours or imposing total/partial lockdown. Restriction in-excess to qualifying level as prescribed in the June 4, order in the present situation will create friction.
Municipal Commissioner after patiently hearing the delegation said that taking clue from rapid increase in positive cases in Kerala after Onam festival, the administration proposed pro-active curbs/restrictions as a precautionary measure. He further said that after consultation with stakeholders as directed by Guardian Minister, Dr. Nitin Raut, the proposal to implement restrictions/lockdown in Nagpur district has been dropped. Later if positive cases increases then administration shall be forced to take stringent decision like imposition of curbs. Radhakrishnan B., Municipal Commissioner has appealed to business community and citizens to religiously follow covid appropriate behaviour and avoid going to crowded places. He also appealed devotees to celebrate the Ganesh Utsav festival with abundant care. The concerned Ganesh Mandal should take responsibility and ensure that visitors properly wear face-mask, follow SOPs and avoid crowding.
Dipen Agrawal, on behalf of the delegation thanked Municipal Commissioner for the patient hearing and for keeping in abeyance the proposed imposition of restrictions/lockdown in Nagpur.