Karnataka readies for industry operations from May 4

Coronavirus lockdown: Karnataka readies for industry operations from May 4

A family hitches a ride on a truck on Tumakuru Road in Bengaluru on Thursday. DH Photo/Pushkar V

Karnataka has decided to allow all industries located outside Covid-19 containment zones to operate from May 4, Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa said on Thursday, even as he cautioned that the virus crisis may last another couple of months.

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Yediyurappa and Industries Minister Jagadish Shettar met industry captains to discuss resuming operations from May 4. The state government anticipates that the Centre will allow industrial operations to resume, Yediyurappa said.

The government has already permitted industries to start operations in green zones.

Industries will have to take precautionary measures on factory premises and ensure social distancing after they are opened. Officials from the Labour department clarified that permission will be provided for industries to extend their working hours so that labourers can work in shifts.

“We feel the virus is coming under control in the state. In Bengaluru, not many cases have been reported in the last 3-4 days. If this continues, it’ll help us open up industries in and around Bengaluru also. We’ll wait for 2-3 days,” Yediyurappa told reporters.

Also Read: Coronavirus India update: State-wise total number of confirmed cases, deaths

“It won’t be a surprise if the corona (threat) continues for another 2-3 months. However, based on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s directions, stringent lockdown measures (in red zones) and reviving economic activity will go hand in hand,” the chief minister said.

Taluk-level zones

Karnataka is moving towards declaring containment zones at taluk levels after May 3 to ensure that other parts of a district where Covid-19 cases are not reported remain open for industrial and other commercial activities. Law Minister J C Madhuswamy said inter-district passes will be issued to top management members of industry units to travel from their homes to workplaces.

Malls, liquor outlets, salons and restaurants will remain closed till May 3, after which the government will take a call based on the directions issued by the Centre. 

“Opening of malls and hotels is not an option before us right now. But all hotels can give parcels,” Yediyurappa said.

“I’m confident that the PM will allow the resumption of all activities. He has already said that corona (containment) and economic activities will have to go hand in hand. So, I’m expecting the Centre to take some favourable decisions,” he said.