NEW DELHI :
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday declared a three week country-wide lock down from midnight.
Signalling the rising threat from the spread of Covid-19, PM Modi said this drastic measure was necessary to protect the state of India’s health and its economy.
“Negligence, wrong-thinking are jeopardising the lives of your family members, friends and even the entire country," he said, adding, “This could cause immense harm to India."
According to the prime minister, the only way the spread of this virus could be contained was through social-distancing.
In India, 515 people have tested positive so far for COVID-19 with 468 undergoing treatment and 10 deaths. Worldwide, Covid-19 has caused almost 400,000 infections and more than 17,000 deaths according to a live tracker of the disease run by the US based Johns Hopkins University.
At 107, Maharashtra leads in terms of number of people affected by COVID-19. Kerala has the second most number of patients (105), followed by Karnataka (41). Jharkhand, Goa and the north-eastern states have no confirmed cases so far.
In his address to the nation, the second in a week, Modi said it was very important that “to break the chain of infections we need 21 days."
“And I am saying this not as the prime minister but as a member of the family"
“The virus is spreading so fast that despite all efforts and preparations made by countries, the challenge is growing," Modi said stressing the importance of social distancing.
His previous address to the nation was on Thursday when he had appealed to people to stay home on March 22 Sunday between 7am and 9pm to fight the rapidly-spreading coronavirus. “Janata curfew (People’s curfew) – janta curfew for the people, janata curfew by the people, self imposed janata curfew on 22 March between 7am and 9pm. All citizens should follow janata curfew. No citizen should step out or congregate," he had then said.