In a deviation from Centre’s policy that those landing on domestic flights should not be quarantined, Punjab Chief Minister Saturday said all those coming to the state including those taking domestic flights will be home quarantined for 14 days.
Warning of a spike in Covid cases as about 20,000 people from abroad and 60,000 from other states are set to return to Punjab, Amarinder said, “I will not accept the ‘Covid-free’ certificates given by any country. Look what happened to those who came from Dubai to Punjab. They tested negative there and now they have tested positive after coming back. I will not believe in any country’s certificate. I cannot put Punjabis in the harms-way by letting the infection spread due to casual approach. Those asymptomatic will go for home quarantine and those showing symptoms would go for institutional quarantine.”
He was addressing the people of the state through his Facebook page under his #AskCaptain initiative. He was responding to a question from an NRI that those who test negative before taking a flight to India should not be quarantined. He said the 14-days quarantine was mandatory for all those coming to Punjab, through various transports including road, rail and air. Rapid testing teams would check on the home quarantined persons while those found symptomatic would have to undergo thorough testing in hospitals/isolation centres.
He said five flights landed in state on Saturday and 88 flights would be landing in coming days.
The CM said that after the lockdown was eased out, he was getting reports that people were being casual, and not wearing masks or maintaining social distancing. He said, “This is not done. I have directed the police to challan all such people.”
He added that lockdown had to be eased out to keep the economy going but this did not mean that the fight against Covid had ended. “We do not know how long will this continue. It is a long fight. Nobody knows when this will end. We have to be careful and we have to win. Punjab is doing better than any other state in India. Our doubling rate is 86 days against the national average of 14 days and our recovery rate is the best.”
‘No shortage of labour for paddy sowing’
He said only three lakh migrants had left Punjab so far. Ruling out any labour shortage for paddy transplantation, he said the 10 lakh migrants were still there. But they were asking for double the remuneration for labour. He asked the farmers to go in for direct sowing of paddy to reduce labour cost.
Land to industries withdrawing from China
The CM said the state would offer land to companies withdrawing operations out of China. “We have reached out to the embassies of various nations looking to shift their manufacturing/business out of China. We are setting up industrial parks. We were already doing that and those will come handy to allow outside companies to set up base here,” he said.
He said the government has written to embassies of various countries in this regard and is engaged in talks with Japan, Korean and Taiwanese embassies in India.
Wheat procured in record time
The CM said the state had procured wheat in a record time and without any problems. Besides procuring 125 lakh MT of wheat already, the CM said the Covid infection was not allowed to be spread in the mandis where lakhs of farmers had descended on. “We had police, NCC cadets and our frontline workers to ensure that social distancing was maintained.”
Report violator schools
He asked people to report to him about schools not following directions regarding online fee charges. “Report to me if they violate the directions, I will take action,” he said. He also said the decision on opening of gyms will be taken after May 31.
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