'Centre making contradictory statements on lockdown'

Centre making contradictory statements on lockdown: West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee

She also said that before taking such decision the Centre should consult state governments

WB CM Mamata Banerjee (PTI Photo)

Questioning the Home Ministry’s order on opening shops, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday said that the streets will be crowded if all shops are open which will largely fail the purpose of the lockdown. As for the meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi she said that it is yet to be clear how long the lockdown will continue.

She also said that before taking such decision the Centre should consult state governments.

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“Centre on the one hand is saying that lockdown has to be strictly enforced and on the other hand is is announcing that all shops should be allowed to open... But if all the shops are open people will go the shops. If that happens then streets will get crowded, the purpose of lockdown will fail to a great extent,” said Banerjee. She was addressing media persons at the state secretariat.

Banerjee said there was a “lack of clarity” in what the Centre is saying and the orders they are issuing.  She said that the Centre is repeatedly saying that lockdown should be strictly enforced but if all the shops are open how can she ask people not to go to shops.

 

“Lockdown and allowing everything to be open cannot be done together. Either it has to be opened or to be closed. We will announce our decision on Wednesday,” said Banerjee.

Indicating that her government may continue the restrictions till May 21, Banerjee said that she thinks precautions should be maintained till that date.

She once again questioned the rationale behind sending Central teams to the state for reviewing lockdown measures.