CM Uddhav Thackeray-led Maharashtra government is likely to announce lockdown extension across the state today. However, it is unlikely to lift curb and allow economic and other activities to resume in one go in Mumbai, Pune and other red zones, even outside designated containment zones. The Union Home Ministry issued fresh guidelines on Saturday extending Lockdown and allowed shops and businesses outside containment zones to resume from June 1. Centre also said ''Unlock-1'' will be initiated in the country from June 8.
The Centre in its guidelines said that the nationwide lockdown effectuated on March 25 will be relaxed to a great extent, including the opening of shopping malls, restaurants and religious places, even as strict restrictions will remain in place till June 30 in the country's worst-hit areas.
According to TOI report, an hour after Centre's Unlock 1 guidelines, NCP Chief Sharad Pawar met Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray at his official residence at Malabar Hill, to discuss the way ahead for the state, especially hotspots Mumbai and Pune.
Reports further claim, Pawar told the CM Thackeray that the state government should be liberal in reopening shops and other establishments after Sunday, when Lockdown 4.0 ends, while Thackeray appeared to be in favour of a conservative approach.
While announcing the extension of the lockdown in containment zones across the country, the Union Home Ministry said temples, mosques, churches and other religious places and shopping malls will be allowed to open in a phased manner from June 8 while a decision on the opening of schools and colleges will be taken in July in consultation with the states.
As on date, Maharashtra has 3,169 containment zones, of which 684 are in Mumbai and 65 are in Pune, the state’s two major hotspots. Thane district has 177 containment zones.
Maharashtra’s tally approached close to the 3,000 mark on Saturday as 2,940 cases were recorded, the joint second highest count for a day, along with 99 deaths —the third highest single-day addition to the toll so far.