Puducherry CM says Centre silent on requests for funds to fight Covid

Topics Puducherry | Coronavirus | Modi govt

Minister of State for Culture and Tourism with Chief Minister of Puducherry, V Narayanasamy. File Photo

Puducherry Chief Minister V

Narayanasamy on Thursday accused the Centre of continuing to remain 'silent' on the territorial government's requests for funds to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic and said the situation was being managed by using its own funds.

He also said the government would decide its stand on extension of lockdown beyond July 31 or relaxation of curbs at a meeting of the cabinet slated for Friday.

"We have made repeated pleas to the Centre to earmark funds to manage the pandemic situation by strengthening the hospitals with equipment and manpower. The Centre however, continues to remain silent which is a matter of concern for the administration," the chief minister told reporters in a video interaction.

He said the territorial government was spending from its own funds and also by utilising the COVID-19 fund attached to the Chief Minister's Relief Fund to purchase equipment to strengthen facilities in hospitals to treat patients.

Narayanasamy said the territorial administration had soughtRs 225 crore initially from the Centre and the total requirement to purchase ventilators, PPEs, monitors and also to post additional health professionals would be Rs 975 crores.

"We have projected the demand to the Centre repeatedly but all our pleas had evoked no no response," he said.

He said the number of fresh cases of pandemic was on the rise in Puducherry, adding "the big challenge the government is facing here is non-availability of adequate beds in government-run hospitals to handle the increase in number of patients.

He said that the government had approached private medical college hospitals to accommodate patients by earmarking sufficient beds, adding

On a possible extension of lockdown beyond July 31, the chief minister said: "We will take the decision after considering the easing of curbs by the Centre under Unlock-3 and also the announcement of the Tamil Nadu government to extend the lockdown till August 31."

Narayanasamy further said factors such as protection of lives of the people and also ensuring financial resources for the government to face the challenge would be weighed and an appropriate decision would be taken.

The Chief Minister said the government had decided that only residential premises of the person identified as COVID-19 patient alone would be isolated and declared as a containment building instead of announcing the entire street or a stretch of 20 metres as containment zone.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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