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6 more test positive for Covid-19 in Maharashtra, total at 159

The number of Covid-19 cases has risen in Maharashtra over the last 24 hours with six more testing positive for the coronavirus disease on Saturday morning, officials said, taking the total to 159 in the state till date.

Of the six cases, five are from Mumbai while one is from Nagpur.

Chief minister Uddhav Thackeray on Friday evening appealed to the people to stay home, saying the crucial stage in the fight against the virus has begun.

“There the virus can go on multiplying, resulting in the rise of patients multifold. But there is no need to panic as many patients have gotten cured after timely and right treatment,” he said.

However, the police said there are fewer people coming out on the streets compared to the crowding in some parts of the state during the first few days of the lockdown in Maharashtra.

“People have realised the seriousness of the situation and have begun cooperating with the police administration. Local politicians and guardian ministers have been asked to ensure that citizens do step out of their homes without having an emergency,” said an official from Mantralaya.

The Maharashtra government had announced a complete shutdown a day before the 21-day lockdown was imposed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on March 24.

However, migrant workers stranded after the lockdown were seen on the highways trying to find ways to return to their respective states.

Seven such workers were knocked down by a speeding truck on the Mumbai-Ahmedabad highway early on Saturday. Four of them were reportedly declared dead on admission in the nearby hospital.

After the government’s intervention, the supply of essential commodities including vegetables, fruits and grains is coming back to normal.

The Agricultural Produce Market Committees in the state have started functioning paving way for the supply of the essential commodities.

At least 200 trucks with vegetables pulled out of Nashik on Saturday morning making their way to the markets in cities like Mumbai and Thane among others.

The state government has reached out to the Indian Army, seeking its assistance, if required, to set up hospitals. The army’s assistance has been sought to construct makeshift hospitals, streamline supply lines and other related aspects in case of a big spike in numbers.

Deputy chief minister Ajit Pawar said the help was only sought for medical support.

HIGHLIGHTS

Of the six new cases, five are from Mumbai while one is from Nagpur.

Police said there are fewer people coming out on the streets after repeated requests to follow the lockdown rules

The supply of essential commodities including vegetables, fruits and grains is coming back normal

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