Delhi's lockdown extended by one week again, announces Kejriwal
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Sunday announced that the lockdown in the national capital will be extended by one week again. The lockdown has been in force for a month and has been extended three times before. Notably, coronavirus infections have been on the decline in Delhi, however, the daily test positivity rate is yet to fall under 5%.
Kejriwal told reporters on Sunday, "The lockdown was supposed to be lifted at 5 am tomorrow. Delhi is now seeing a good trend in (COVID-related) recoveries." "However, we don't want to squander the gains achieved so far. We are extending the lockdown by one more week. Instead of tomorrow, the lockdown will remain in force till 5 am next Monday (May 24)," he added.
The lockdown in Delhi had first come into force on April 19. It has seen three week-long extensions since then. The lockdown was supposed to be lifted at 5 am on Monday (May 17), but now it will be lifted on May 24 instead. The restrictions include a ban on all social, religious, political, entertainment, and sports gatherings, according to the lockdown guidelines.
All malls, cinema halls, shopping complexes, swimming pools, restaurants, salons, gyms, and spas remain shut. Home delivery/takeaway services by restaurants are allowed. Earlier, public transport such as buses and Metro trains were allowed to function at 50% capacity. However, starting May 10, services of the Delhi Metro rail were also suspended as Kejriwal made the restrictions stricter to sustain the decline in infections.
Delhi reported 6,430 new COVID-19 cases on Saturday, down from a record spike of 28,395 cases on April 20. The positivity rate has dropped to 11.32% against a national average of 17%. Delhi had recorded a positivity rate of 35% on April 26. The total tally has reached 13,87,411. Active infections have declined from nearly one lakh on April 28 to 66,295 on Saturday.
However, COVID-19 fatalities in Delhi have not shown a significant decline. On Saturday, 337 more fatalities pushed the death toll to 21,244. Delhi had reported a record number of single-day fatalities on May 3 when 448 patients lost their lives.