The Karnataka government has decided to extend the current lockdown across the entire state by another two weeks, till June 7, to combat the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The state government had first announced the lockdown across the state starting from May 10 till May 24. Now, it has been extended by two more weeks to June 7.
The decision was taken by Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa after consultations with his ministerial colleagues and officials.
The chief minister said, “These decisions are taken keeping the interest of the citizens in mind. I request people to cooperate.”
According to the chief minister, the COVID-19 cases were going up in the state, with the infection spreading to semi-urban and rural areas. However, he felt that the lockdown had bought down the intensity of the spread to an extent.
He also warned people not to violate the lockdown guidelines and asked the law enforcement authorities to take strict action.
The lockdown restrictions will remain in place, with public transport and metro services in the city being restricted except in cases of emergencies. All retail outlets, especially those selling milk, groceries, fruits and vegetables, will be allowed to operate between 6 am and 10 am.
The COVID-19 cases continue to remain high in Karnataka, with the case positivity rate having touched almost 35 percent at one point. Even the case fatality rate is more than one percent.
On Friday, the Karnataka Health Department reported 32,218 new COVID-19 cases across the state. This number is high when compared to other southern states. Though experts are expecting the case to peak in the month of May itself and get into gradual decline from June.
During these challenging times, the startup ecosystem in the state has also come forward to pour in efforts to combat the pandemic. These include ensuring the supply of medical equipment and materials, and the creation of credible information network for those seeking assistance.