‘People may die if lockdown is lifted’: KCR asks PM to extend lockdown
Telangana chief minister K Chandrashekhar Rao on Monday said he will appeal to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to extend COVID-19 lockdown.
The 21-day lockdown to check the spread of coronavirus in the country came into effect on March 25 and is set to end on April 14.
But chief minister Rao cautioned that if the lockdown is lifted it could cost lives.
“It is true that the country’s economy has taken a beating during the lockdown period. Telangana, too, suffered heavily – our revenue was just Rs 6 crore in the last six days, against the expected revenue of Rs 2,500 crore. But we can always revive the economy once this crisis is over, but we cannot bring back the lives of the people who could die in large numbers if the lockdown is lifted,” he said.
He said it will be difficult to control people if the lockdown is lifted.
“All the efforts we had put in all these days, braving financial loss, would go waste if the situation comes back to square one due to the lockdown being eased,” Rao said.
“The lockdown is the reason the country is saved and has seen very few cases. A country like India has to be careful otherwise it will become uncontrollable. The economy will get hurt but at least we are not seeing deaths like Italy, Spain and the US,” KCR said, adding that he had suggested to Prime Minister Narendra Modi that the curbs be extended for two more weeks.
“At least some of the restrictions should stay for a bit more. Otherwise, India will not be able to handle things if the lockdown is hastily lifted,” he said.
Earlier on Monday, a top Uttar Pradesh bureaucrat also hinted that the lockdown may not be lifted in the state on April 14.
Telangana has so far recorded 334 positive cases. Thirty-three of them has recovered while there have been 11 casualties.
Last week, Rao announced massive pay cuts for ministers, MLAs and government employees amid shrinking revenue. The government did not say how long the pay cuts would remain.