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As fresh Covid-19 cases seem to stabilise in Maharashtra, more relaxations in the lockdown norms may be given in the next few days, said state minister Aslam Shaikh on Wednesday.

According to Shaikh, several ministers in the Maha Vikas Aghadi alliance government feel that people who are vaccinated with two doses should be permitted to travel. Further, restaurants may be allowed to stay open for a longer duration.

"A decision will be taken soon," he said.

According to a Hindustan Times report, the state government has been facing pressure from various quarters to relax rules as several businesses encounter economic hardships.

The state reported 6,258 new coronavirus cases and 254 fatalities on Tuesday, raising its overall infection tally to 62,76,057 and death toll to 1,31,859.

With 12,645 patients being discharged from hospitals during the day, the count of recoveries went up to 60,58,751, leaving Maharashtra with 82,082 active cases. The recovery rate stands at 96.54 % while the fatality rate is 2.01%.

The Mumbai region reported 1,023 new Covid-19 cases and 39 fatalities, including 344 cases and five fatalities in Mumbai city. Pune region reported 2,356 new cases and 44 fresh fatalities including 222 new cases and two fatalities in Pune city.

Since fresh infections are going down even in the regions that were among the worst affected, some curbs may be eased, the HT report said.

“The government can give some relaxations as cases have stabilised. However, at the same time, strict monitoring should be followed daily for various aspects like daily cases, positivity rates, bed occupancy as well as liquid-oxygen consumption," said Dr Subhash Salunkhe, advisor to the state on Covid-19 management.

The doctor said that the time of the shops may be extended from the current 4 pm deadline while emphasising the need for vaccination of all workers. He said that local trains services need to resume in a staggered manner and preference given to those fully vaccinated.

Phased unlock plan

Maharashtra had last month implemented a detailed five-level plan to unlock the state based on the positivity rate and occupancy of oxygenated beds in districts and cities.

However, by the end of June, the Uddhav Thackeray-led administration amended the rules after cases of the Delta Plus Covid-19 variant were detected.

There were only three levels in the new guidelines, irrespective of weekly positivity rate and oxygen bed occupancy.

Maharashtra government also said that all administrative units will be under level 3 and above (4 or 5) till the district disaster management authority takes a call to withdraw them.




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