In the wake of coronavirus outbreak in Maharashtra, the authorities announced complete lockdown in Pune, Pimpri-Chinchwad and some parts of rural Pune from July 13. "A lockdown will be imposed in Pune, Pimpri Chinchwad and some other areas of the district considering the rise in COVID-19 cases," divisional commissioner (Pune division) Deepak Mhaisekar said.
Only the essential services will be allowed during the 10-day long lockdown in Pune. The medical shops will remain functional, said Mhaisekar. The dairy shops will also remain open.
The authorities identified 22 villages in the rural areas of Pune where the lockdown will be re-imposed. The containment areas will also be under the strict lockdown, confirmed Naval Kishore Ram, Pune district collector. The lockdown will be effective till July 23. The lockdown will be implemented to break the COVID-19 chain in the state, district collector said.
The decision to enforce the lockdown was taken in a meeting chaired by Maharashtra deputy chief minister and district guardian minister Ajit Pawar here, the official said.
"The lockdown period between July 13 and July 18 will be stricter," Mhaisekar added. The district reported a record spike of 1,803 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday. The total number of coronavirus cases in the state city at 34,399. The deadly virus claimed 978 lives in the state.
"Sometimes when people don't follow rules, some decisions like this (lockdown) have to be taken. We implement lockdown in Thane as well. When cases increase at some places, such decision is taken," Maharashtra deputy chief minister Ajit Pawar said today.
The lockdown will be imposed in Pune in two parts. The first phase of the lockdown will be from July 13 to July 18. Only milk shops, pharmacies and medical shops will remain functional during this time. During the second phases, from July 19 to July 23, essential services will be allowed along with dairy shops, hospitals and medical outlets.
The new rise in coronavirus cases across the country forced several state governments to re-impose the lockdown. A nine-day curfew was imposed in Aurangabad, an industrial town in Maharashtra, to contain a spike. The lockdown severely affected operations of automakers such as Bajaj Auto.
Uttar Pradesh government announced a two-day lockdown in the state, starting from today. Only the essential services will be permitted to function during the two-day lockdown in Yodi Adityanath's state. A fresh lockdown was re-implemented in the containment areas of the West Bengal from Thursday to curb the virus spread.
Maharashtra alone recorded 230,599 coronavirus cases since the outbreak. Nearly 10,000 people were died to due to COVID-19 infection in the state. Maharashtra, Delhi and Tamil Nadu accounted for 60% of the total coronavirus cases in India.