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Kejriwal links Covid surge to pollution, says steps planned

Corona cases and deaths have been rising alarmingly in Delhi over the last few weeks. On Friday, the city reported 91 deaths and 7,802 new cases, with a positivity rate of 13.80%.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: November 14, 2020 2:39:10 am
Arvind Kejriwal, Delhi covid cases, Coronacirus cases in Delhi, Kejriwal on delhi covid cases, delhi air pollution, delhi government, Delhi news, Indian expressArvind Kejriwal blamed pollution for the surge in coronavirus cases in Delhi. (File)

Attributing the surge in coronavirus cases in Delhi to air pollution, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal Friday said his government will take “many steps” next week to combat the situation.

Addressing a webcast, Kejriwal said the government has drawn up the measures to be implemented to tackle the surge, though he did not spell them out.

“Corona cases are rising in Delhi over the last few days. I am also worried over this. We are taking all necessary steps. Next week, we will take many more steps that we have already planned. I hope Corona will come under control in the next seven to 10 days,” Kejriwal said.

Corona cases and deaths have been rising alarmingly in Delhi over the last few weeks. On Friday, the city reported 91 deaths and 7,802 new cases, with a positivity rate of 13.80%.

“The biggest reason behind the rise in cases is pollution. Delhi had managed to control the situation. Till about October 20, the situation was under control. But pollution has caused the spike. There are other reasons too,” the CM said.

The increase in deaths has deepened the worries of the Delhi government which has maintained that the emergence of new cases should not be considered alarming as long as people recover and the death count remains low.

The decision of the government to ease the restrictions in markets, large gatherings and public transport has also drawn the ire of the Delhi High Court. Markets in the city, where a high prevalence of the virus has been found by district authorities, are witnessing heavy footfall, which has brought cheer to businesses after a long time.

The government informed the Delhi HC on Thursday that it will request Lt Governor Anil Baijal to convene a meeting of the Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) on Monday or Tuesday to review the situation. Baijal heads the DDMA.

The Centre had in August made it clear that states cannot enforce fresh lockdown measures without its approval.

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