Unlock Delhi: Odd-even rule for markets; metro services to resume
Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal Saturday announced further lockdown relaxations that will apply from June 7 as part of his government's "unlock" process for the national capital. He said markets and malls will operate on an odd-even basis, while Delhi Metro services will resume with 50% occupancy. This comes amid a decline in Delhi's daily COVID-19 cases to around 500 in recent days. Here's more.
Odd-even rule won't apply to shops selling essentials, chemists
CM Kejriwal said markets and malls in Delhi shall operate on an odd-even basis—half of the shops in a particular market/mall will be allowed to open on one day, while the remaining half will operate the next day. Notably, the odd-even rule wouldn't apply to shops selling essential items and chemists; they can remain open on all days. Standalone shops can also open daily.
Private offices in Delhi can operate at 50% capacity
The Chief Minister said all private offices in Delhi can function with 50% of staff members from Monday, but also urged those who can work from home to continue with the same. As for government offices, Group A staff members can work on all days with 100% capacity, while employees from other categories working under them will be allowed to function with 50% capacity.
More relaxations to be announced as situation improves
As mentioned earlier, CM Kejriwal also announced Delhi Metro services will run at a 50% capacity starting Monday. He further said, "As and when the situation keeps improving, more relaxations (in the lockdown) will be announced. This is what is being done currently."
We are ready to combat the third wave: Kejriwal
Kejriwal on Saturday also expressed confidence that Delhi is ready to deal with the possible third COVID-19 wave in which children are more likely to get infected. He said a pediatric task force has been constituted and two genome-sequencing labs for detection of any new variants would also be set up. On Friday, two government-constituted committees reviewed Delhi's preparedness to tackle the third wave.
Steps being taken to ensure there's no oxygen shortage
Kejriwal also said measures are being taken to ensure there's no oxygen shortage. "With an expected third wave of COVID-19, 420 tons of oxygen storage capacity is being prepared. We have also spoken to Indraprastha Gas Limited to produce 150 tons of oxygen," he said.
Delhi reported 523 new cases on Friday
To note, the national capital recorded 523 fresh COVID-19 cases and 50 fatalities on Friday taking the number of active cases to 8,060 and pushing the death toll to 24,497. However, Friday's numbers showed a marginal rise compared to Thursday when Delhi registered 487 cases and 45 deaths. On the other hand, Delhi's positivity rate stood at 0.68% on Friday, showed government data.
Delhi to unlock in a phased manner
To recall, the Kejriwal government started the process of unlocking Delhi last week by allowing manufacturing and construction activities, nearly two months after lockdown in Delhi was imposed on April 19 due to the second wave. He said Delhi will follow a phased unlocking process.