Decision on lockdown extension on June 5, says home minister Basavaraj Bommai

Prime News, Karnataka, Bengaluru, June 3:-A final decision on extending the lockdown restrictions in the state due to end on Monday, June 7, will be taken by chief minister B S Yediyurappa at a key meeting of ministers convened by him on Saturday, June 5, home and law minister, Basavaraj Bommai said on Wednesday.

Speaking to reporters after visiting the Government Hospital at Rattihalli village in Haveri district on Wednesday, the Minister said the chief minister will be touring Belagavi district on Friday, June 4, to study the ground situation.

The state government had imposed strict lockdown restrictions across Karnataka from May 10 for two weeks which was further extended till June 7, 6 am.

The Covid infection cases have come down. However, the number of positive cases need to come down in a few more districts. All these factors and the advice of experts will be considered before taking a final decision. The chief minister will decide whether the lockdown must be continued or withdrawn or alternatively how to handle the situation, the minister said pointing out that the focus of the government was to contain the surge in the Covid pandemic.

At the same time, Bommai said the state government was taking all steps to prevent the Covid third wave in Karnataka. Over 24,000 oxygenated beds have been arranged and the number of ventilators has been increased by 100%. The government has decided to establish oxygen generating plans in each district and taluk centres as part of the measures to help in the treatment of Covid infected patients.

The home minister said the state was launching a big vaccination campaign during the months of July, August and September. All Covid warriors and those eligible to receive the second dose of vaccines are being vaccinated on a priority basis at present, he said.

The minister said the government has already appointed 51 doctors and steps are being taken to fill up the vacancies of doctors in all government hospitals in the Haveri district. Steps are also being taken to fill up the vacant posts by appointing doctors on a contract basis, he said.

The black fungus infection has emerged as a major challenge in the Haveri district, he said adding that union chemicals and pharmaceuticals minister, D V Sadananda Gowda to supply more quantities of necessary drugs to treat the infection.

The minister directed the district medical officers and administration to take special steps to establish separate special wards for treating Covid infected children in the government hospitals, if necessary by converting the maternity wards as special ICU wards for children.

The minister visited the government hospitals in Rattihalli, Masur and Hirekeruru villages along with agriculture minister BC Patil. The ministers also visited the Covid Care Centres and directed that the ventilator systems must be improved.

Earlier, he inaugurated the newly established Taralabalu Covid Care Centre at the Sri Shivakumar Boys Hostel of the Taralabalau Mutt in Sirigere of Chitradurga district.

Taralabalu Mutt pontiff, Dr Shivamurthy Shivacharya Swamiji, agriculture minister, BC Patil, BJP MP G M Siddeshwra, MLAs Narayanaswamy and Chandrappa were present.

-(NAV, Inputs: Agencies)

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