Puducherry Chief Minister V Narayanaswamy on Monday urged the Centre to provide more personal protection equipment for doctors and nurses who are in the forefront of the battle against Covid19.
Taking part in a video conference Prime Minister Narendra Modi had with State Chief Ministers on the road ahead after the current lockdown ends on May 3, Narayanaswamy also urged the Centre to give additional interest free loans to the Union Territory.
Unlike Chief Ministers of Meghalaya and many other States which favoured an extension of the lockdown, Narayanaswamy went along with Tamil Nadu which has been toeing the Centre's line.
While Modi asked States to divide to red, orange and green zones and work out a phased exit in green and orange zones, Tamil Nadu is yet to designate these zones.
Chief Minister Edappadi K Palanisami and Health Minister C Vijayabaskar took part in the video conference.
So far over 1,800 cases and 24 deaths have been reported in the State.
The infection is spread across the State. While Chennai tops the list, adjoining districts of Chengalpattu, Tiruvallur and Kanchipuram have fewer cases. The incidence is not very high in the Cauvery delta districts of Thanjavur, Tiruvarur and Nagapattinam as also Tiruchi and adjoining Perambulur. Further down south, Madurai and Tirunelveli and Ramanathapuram which have sizable Muslim population have seen a spike in cases.
After Chennai, worst affected are the western districts of Coimbatore, Erode, Tirupur, Salem and Namakkal whole Krishnagiri and Dharmapuri which are in northern Tamil Nadu have reported very few cases.
The severity of the situation can be gauged by the intense lockdown now in force in Chennai, Madurai, Erode and Coimbatore from Sunday and which will end only on Wednesday night The Chennai Corporation has declared over 108 areas as hotspots. With the government failing to ensure door delivery of vegetables and fruits, and shutting down even grocery shops in the so called curfew bound cities, people are forced to come out to buy essentials defeating the very purpose of the shutdown.