Delhi Lockdown: Kejriwal govt to lift restrictions? Here's what you should know

Delhi on Friday recorded just 8,506 COVID-19 cases. This was the first time in a month when the national capital reported less than 10,000 fresh cases, leading to a sharp decline in its positivity rate. The city had reported 7,897 COVID-19 cases on April 10.

Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, while addressing a virtual presser on Friday, credited the lockdown imposed by his Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government last month behind the dip in daily cases.

However, the AAP supremo hinted that the lockdown, which is scheduled to end on the morning of May 17, will not be lifted and stressed that Delhiites should continue taking all necessary precautions to ensure that cases do not rise.

"If we do not take precautions, then the cases will increase again. There is no guarantee that they will remain low. Delhi may face problems again. And therefore by no means, can we let loose. The lockdown has to be adhered to strictly and should employ all the ways to ensure protection from coronavirus," Kejriwal was quoted as saying by news agency IANS.

Notably, several medical experts and doctors at several leading private and government hospitals have warned against lifting restrictions in Delhi, saying it would lead to a massive surge in cases again.

The experts and doctors have said that there should be "no room for complacency" and noted that the severity of infection is still high despite in decline cases. They have also urged the government to ramp up the COVID-19 vaccination drive in the city-state.

At present, as per the Union Health Ministry data, Delhi has over 77,000 active COVID-19 cases while 12.74 lakh have recovered from the infection. On the other hand, the death toll in the national capital is more than 20,000.

"The severity of cases is still there and we must not lower our guards. We hope, people will learn lessons from this tragedy and horrific deaths and continue to follow COVID-appropriate behaviors," news agency PTI quoted Fortis hospital's Dr Richa Sareen as saying.

While experts have batted for the lockdown to continue, the National Delhi Traders Association (NDTA) has urged Kejriwal to lift the restrictions in a phased manner "with strict enforcement of laws".

The traders have accepted that lockdown has helped in controlling coronavirus cases but said that it is impacting the economy of Delhi.

"We are of the opinion that the government instead of extending lockdown should open the markets in a phased manner with strict enforcement of laws and proper sanitization," NDTA president Atul Bhargava said while speaking to PTI.



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