People will have to be ready to live with coronavirus: Kejriwal

New Delhi: Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Sunday said the time has come to re-open Delhi and people will have to be ready to live with the novel coronavirus as he announced the implementation of all lockdown relaxations prescribed by the Centre for the ‘Red Zone’ in the national capital.

Addressing an online media briefing, Kejriwal said the Delhi government will suggest to the Centre that only containment areas in the city be declared as red zones and not the entire district.

At present, all 11 districts in the city have been declared as red zones.

The chief minister said the novel coronavirus is going nowhere and it is impossible that cases of coronavirus will be zero.

“It is impossible that there will be no cases of coronavirus because it has not happened across the world. We will have to be ready to live with coronavirus. We will have to get used to it,” he said.

India has been under lockdown since March 23.

He said the government’s earnings and economy have been badly affected due to the coronavirus-induced lockdown, adding that Delhi is ready to relax full lockdown restrictions.

He cited figures saying in April 2019, the government earned Rs 3,500 crore while in April this year, it only received Rs 300 crore.

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He said that people are losing jobs and traders are suffering because there is no business, adding “we will not be able to continue this for long because of no revenue generation due to the lockdown.”

“The Centre has put the entire Delhi under red zone due to which markets, malls cannot open. We have suggested the Centre to seal those areas where cases of coronavirus have been reported and rest of areas can be allowed for the operation of all activities,” he said.

“The time has come to re-open Delhi and we are ready for it. We are in touch with Centre. We hope that markets will start operating soon in Delhi. It may cause a rise in the number of cases, but we are ready to deal with the situation.”

Arwind Kejriwal

Kejriwal said the Delhi government will also take strict action against those who spit in public.

He added that the movement of people from 7 pm to 7 am will not be allowed, as suggested by the Centre.

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Kejriwal said the government and private offices will open from Monday but the suspension of travel by flight, metro and bus will continue.

Delivery of essential goods through e-commerce portals will continue in the national capital, he said.

Delhi government offices engaged in essential services will function with full strength while offices of non-essential services and private offices can operate with 33 per cent strength.

“Malls, cinemas, salons, market complexes and Delhi Metro will remain shut while shops selling essentials will continue will be open,” he said, adding that 50 people will be allowed in marriage function.

He said that funeral related gatherings will ensure social distancing, and the maximum numbers allowed will not be more than 20.

According to the government, manufacturing units of essential goods, including drugs, pharmaceuticals, medical devices and their raw material will be allowed.

Jute industry with staggered shifts and social distancing and manufacturing of IT hardware and manufacturing units of packaging material will continue to be permitted.

Services provided by self-employed persons such as electrician, plumber, lift technician, AC mechanic, vehicle mechanic, generator mechanic, TV mechanic and Dish TV are among those to be allowed from Monday.

Movement of individuals and vehicles is allowed only for permitted activities, with a maximum of two persons (besides the driver) in four-wheeler vehicles, and with no pillion rider in the case of two-wheelers.

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