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Maharashtra government sets up industry task force for emergency response to pandemic

The task force has been set up two weeks after the Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray issued instructions about the task force at a meeting held with the office-bearers of the CII to ensure the continuation of economic activities amid the possible third wave of the infection.

Written by Vishwas Waghmode | Mumbai |
Updated: July 27, 2021 9:33:42 am
Maharashtra government sets up industry task force for emergency response to pandemicThe Maharashtra government Monday constituted a 30-member task force headed by Industries Minister Subhash Desai to ensure an emergency response to the Covid-19 pandemic. (File photo)

To ensure smooth functioning of the industries in the state amid the Covid-19, the Maharashtra government Monday constituted a 30-member task force headed by Industries Minister Subhash Desai to ensure an emergency response to the pandemic and prepare a strategic action plan for a medium term among others.

As per the government order, the task force has been entrusted with the job of an emergency response to Covid-19, preparing a strategic action plan for the medium term, ensuring the industry compliance of health protocols, augmenting healthcare capabilities and coordination of relief operations, including availability of vaccines, quarantine centres, testing centres, oxygen, meals for employees and others.

The task force has been set up two weeks after the Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray issued instructions about the task force at a meeting held with the office-bearers of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) to ensure the continuation of economic activities amid the possible third wave of the infection.

Officials said that while the task force has been set up initially for a period of six months, it will meet fortnight or monthly as per the need.

“To alleviate economic stress, provide support to the industries and potential investors, and supplement the relief efforts in the state, the task force has been set up comprising the officers of the state industries department, state government and key industry champions representing manufacturing and services sectors in the state,” said an official.

The industries, Desai told The Indian Express, have been asked to create a bio-bubble for their employees to ensure smooth functioning of the units during Covid-19. “We have told the industries to complete the vaccination of their employees by tying up with various private hospitals. We have also told them to include the staff of their contractors and vendors as well in the inoculation drives,” he said.

Desai further said that the industries have also been urged to make donations to provide relief to the flood-affected people. “We will hold the first meeting of the task force tomorrow,” he added.

Desai is chairman of the task force while chief secretary Sitaram Kunte is the vice-chairman. The secretaries of the Industries department, Chief Minister’s Office, Public Health and Medical Education and few other officials are the members of the task force.

Apart from senior bureaucrats, the private sector will be represented by Uday Kotak, CEO of Kotak Mahindra Bank, Sanjiv Bajaj, Chairman and MD of Bajaj Finserv among others and the respective chapter heads of CII, FICCI, NASSCOM will be the convenors of the task force.

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