Prime Minister Narendra Modi had a video conference call with iTV Network Founder and Promoter, Kartikeya Sharma, and owners of other media houses to direct them about their roles in making people aware of novel coronavirus aka COVID-19, which has infected more than 553 people and claimed 10 lives so far in the country.
After the meeting with the Prime Minister, Kartikeya Sharma told NewsX managing editor Rishabh Gulati that PM Modi not only briefed the media industry on the situation but also discussed how the government is dealing with the pandemic. Sharma said the most important takeaway from the conversation was the need for greater discipline to tackle the problem.
Quoting PM Modi, Sharma added that funds and equipment that most developed nations have better than India, are not the only things needed to eliminate the coronavirus, but discipline is the most important of them all. India is in a much better condition compared to other countries and the situation can be controlled only with people’s support, Kartikeya Sharma said.
The Prime Minister not only briefed media giants, also took suggestions from them. Kartikeya Sharma said he advised the Prime Minister to publicize the experience and story of people who have been cured so that people should understand the way of functioning and get over the misconception that quarantine centres are little over jails.
After a days’s nationwide lockdown (Janata curfew) on Sunday, which was called by the Prime Minister, most state governments including Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Delhi, Punjab, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Haryana have imposed lockdown till March 31 to curb the spread of the virus. CrPc Section 144, which restricts gathering of 5 or more people, has been imposed in the capital. People violating the directions are being punished or fined Rs 1000 under IPC section 188.
A day ago, PM Modi, through a tweet, had asked people to take the situation and precautions seriously and requested people to stay indoors. The Prime Minister also asked the state governments to impose directions forcefully if needed.
Meanwhile, the deadly virus claimed the 8th casualty in the country, in Mumbai. The deceased was a Filipino, who died due to kidney failure and was also a coronavirus suspect, said the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.
Reports said 75 districts in 22 states and union territories are under clamp down.
Metro, railway, and inter-state bus services have been terminated until further orders by the state governments.
All India Institute of Medical Sciences, in a statement today, announced the shutting of all OPD services as a precautionary measure in view of the coronavirus outbreak.