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"Lifting lockdown would be an invitation to a fresh wave of COVID-19," says Maharashtra minister Aslam Shaikh

Aslam Shaikh's statement came days after Relief and Rehabilitation Minister Vijay Wadettiwar on Monday, May 24, hinted that the lockdown in the state would be gradually eased after June 1.

"Lifting lockdown would be an invitation to a fresh wave of COVID-19," says Maharashtra minister Aslam Shaikh
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On Tuesday, May 26, Maharashtra cabinet minister Aslam Shaikh cautioned against lifting coronavirus-induced curbs without completing vaccination of half the adult population in the state.

This statement came days after Relief and Rehabilitation Minister Vijay Wadettiwar on Monday, May 24, hinted that the lockdown in the state would be gradually eased after June 1.

Meanwhile, Shaikh in a conversation with media mentioned that lifting curbs without inoculating 50 per cent of the adult population against COVID-19 in Maharashtra, where lockdown-like restrictions are in place till June 1, may lead to a fresh wave of the infection.

Considering the situation, there is no question of complete unlock in the state at the moment. It would be an invitation for a fresh coronavirus outbreak if lockdown is lifted without completing the inoculation of half the population in Mumbai and the state. The state cabinet is still mulling over how to introduce relaxations to provide some relief to traders and businesspersons, said Shaikh.

The minister also stated that despite decreasing daily coronavirus cases, presently, there are more than 50,000 patients are on oxygen or ICU beds in Maharashtra. With more than 95 percent of people in the United States having been vaccinated, most are now walking around without a mask. To make that a possibility, citizens across Maharashtra should get the vaccination done as soon as possible.

Also Read: COVID-19 restrictions in Maharashtra: "Lockdown extension is not acceptable at any cost," says FAM

Talking about the shortage of vials, Shaikh said the BMC has issued a global tender for the purchase of vaccines and it has received a response from Sputnik and a few other suppliers. But we have increased the tender limit so that more companies can participate in it.

The state COVID-19 task force is going to discuss all the aspects at its review meetings. The state is mulling over giving priority to certain shops to operate, which services should be preferred over others and such as shops with air conditioning should be allowed or not among other issues, he added.

Also Read: State government to take a decision on lockdown soon

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