West Bengal declares bi-weekly lockdown for coming weeks

With the condition of Coronavirus pandemic worsening, the West Bengal government takes a new step to contain then spread. Monday, 20th July saw a rise of 2,282 cases in 24 hours with 36 deaths. This prompted the Bengal Government to introduce a new plan. The new plan with imposes complete lockdown on two days of the coming weeks.

For July, the dates which will see the entire eastern state of India under lockdown are 23rd(Thursday), 25th(Saturday) and 29th (Wednesday). On Monday 27th, the lockdown schedule of August will be declared. AlapanBandyopadhyay, Home Secretary revealed the decision to the press. Every mode of transportation and establishment will be under lockdown.

Containment zones in the state.

West Bengal government took the solution of containment areas very seriously. The state saw the last complete lockdown on May 29th and since then the cases gave skyrocketed. Around 60% of the cases in Bengal were recorded in July.

According to the guidelines released by the Union Ministry of Health and Family Affairs, the containment zones are in complete lockdown. The buffer zones around the containment zones were clubbed together to form the ‘broad-based’ containment area which is carefully monitored.

“This is in addition to the existing lockdown that is being followed on the broad-based containment areas,” AlapanBandyopadhyay said.

The decision of complete own on two days of the week is not a decided success and could be a failure but something had to be done regarding the rising number in Bengal. Mamata Banerjee, Chief Minister of Bengal presided over the meeting which included experts, doctors, members of law enforcement.

Senior physician, Sukumar Mukherjee said regarding the lockdown, “This is a trial-and-error method. But we believe this will be able to break the chain and bring down the infection curve.”

Banks in West Bengal

Only the banks in West Bengal will not be a part of the complete lockdown schedule. Although, the banks have been advised to seek both Saturday and Sunday as a day off. Also, the customer transaction will be limited to a few hours, from 10 am to 2 pm, every working day.

Medical Facilities improved

“Community transmission of COVID-19 recorded in a few areas in West Bengal” said AlapanBandyopadhyay.

West Bengal currently records 42,487 cases with 1,112 deaths. There has been repeated complains against the State Government of hiding the actual numbers.

According to the news agency Press Trust of India State Government of West Bengal is planning to set up COVID-19 units in all hospitals in the state. The district which are majorly hit in the pandemic are targeted for the first phase of setting up the units. Those districts would include South 24 Parganas, North 24 Parganas, PurbaMedinipore and PaschimMedinipore. Also, the number of testing conducted per day needs to be hiked up for efficiency of containment of the highly communicable disease.

Better and safer unit hospital conditions are in the minds of the health experts. With no proper medicine or vaccine, the only service which is provided to severe cases of COVID-19 infected patients is a supply of oxygen and ventilation. Better ambulance services to patients are also of concern.

What services will be available to the citizens?

Essential services will be available during the lockdown. Provision of healthcare, food, water, electricity, petrol, diesel, cooking gas services will be available. Banks would be open every day for a stipulated time period too. Transportation of online food services will be open in the state.

Airlines services will be suspended during the lockdown days. Recently 6 cities were restricted from domestic airline services to Kolkata.

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