Mumbai: Maharashtra Minister and NCP leader Nawab Malik on Tuesday said the central government should take things seriously as the Kumbh Mela and elections can worsen the COVID-19 situation in the country.
Speaking to ANI, the minister said, “The COVID-19 cases increase due to mass gathering. In an election situation, there are thousands and thousands of people gathering together. Even in Kumbh Mela, lakhs of people gather together. The Government of India should take the matter seriously. Otherwise, the pandemic situation will worsen.”
“Strict restrictions are imposed in Maharashtra. Malls, religious places, shops, cinema halls and social, political and religious functions are banned. There is a mini-lockdown situation in the state. Arrangements are being made so that there should be no lack of beds and oxygen cylinders in hospitals. The situation is being monitored. We held discussions with other parties for further course of action,” added Malik.
He further said the COVID-19 vaccination programme should be opened for all. “In Maharashtra, around 51,000 new COVID cases have been reported while in the country over 1.61 lakh new cases have been reported in the last 24 hours. A sufficient RT-PCR test is not being conducted across the country. The criterion of above 45 years for vaccination should be relaxed especially in the states where cases are high. Even, Congress president Sonia Gandhi also urged the centre regarding the same,” stated the NCP leader.
Asked about former Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh, he said, “CBI has summoned Anil Deshmukh. We believe that he did not do anything wrong. The truth will come after the investigation.”