No lockdown needed in Delhi due to third COVID-19 wave: Health minister

Satyendar Jain says wearing masks will have the same effect as lockdown; Centre decides to airlift docs, paramedics, provide 300 more ICU beds

Photo for representational purpose only. File photo: PTI

In the wake of a third wave of COVID-19 infections in Delhi, state health minister Satyendar Jain on Monday (November 16) clarified that the national capital will not be put under another lockdown as it will not be effective anymore.

“There will be no re-imposition of lockdown in Delhi. I don’t think it will be an effective step now, wearing of masks by everyone will be more beneficial,” Jain told ANI.

Amid concerns over a rise in cases due to the festive season, Jain said it has not been decide if markets will be shut down.

Related news: Kejriwal gears up for ‘third wave’ of COVID-19 infection in Delhi

“The lockdown was a learning exercise…what we learnt was that the gains from a lockdown were the same as those from wearing masks,” he said.

The Centre on Sunday decided to airlift more doctors and paramedics from Central Armed Police Forces, get additional medical equipment to tackle severe cases, provide 300 ICU beds and double RT-PCR testing capacity during a meeting held to control the sudden rise in cases.

The review meeting presided over by Home Minister Amit Shah was attended by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan and Lt Governor Anil Baijal among others.

The situation grew grim when cases rose and hospitals were unable to accommodate patients due to unavailability of beds.

The national capital in the past week recorded 51,000 cases, the highest in the country with the biggest daily spike going beyond 8,500.

Related news: Festive season, air pollution responsible for rise in COVID cases

Shah, during the review meeting directed the implementation of a multi-pronged strategy and focus on areas including early treatment, and strict enforcement of containment and surveillance measures.

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