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Bhupesh Baghel holds Centre responsible for COVID-19 spread in country

He argued that the epidemic would not have spread had the government screened and quarantined all passengers who came from other countries early on.

Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel.

As the number of confirmed coronavirus cases in India inched closer to 6,000, Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel on Thursday held the Central government responsible for the spread of the disease in the country. He argued that the epidemic would not have spread had the government screened and quarantined all passengers who came from other countries early on.

As for extending the lockdown, Baghel said his government will take a decision on April 12, a day after the Prime Minister’s scheduled video-conference with Chief Ministers of all states.

“This disease did not originate in India. This disease came to India through people who arrived in the country via international flights. Had all those people who landed in India — be it in Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Hyderabad or Chennai — in international flights… been screened and quarantined early on… then this situation would not have arisen… the disease would not have spread all over India… the problems that we are facing today could have been averted… this the Central government should have done,” he said at a Congress press conference.

Here’s a quick Coronavirus guide from Express Explained to keep you updated: What can cause a COVID-19 patient to relapse after recovery? | COVID-19 lockdown has cleaned up the air, but this may not be good news. Here’s why | Can alternative medicine work against the coronavirus? | A five-minute test for COVID-19 has been readied, India may get it too | How India is building up defence during lockdown | Why only a fraction of those with coronavirus suffer acutely | How do healthcare workers protect themselves from getting infected? | What does it take to set up isolation wards?

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