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Kejriwal suggests Centre to allow metro services for govt staff, those engaged in essential services

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New Delhi, May 15: Metro services in Delhi should be permitted for government staff and only those engaged in essential services for at least one week post May 17, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has suggested Prime Minister Narendra Modi. In a letter to the Prime Minister, he also suggested that barber shops, cinema halls, salons and religious places should remain closed.

Kejriwal suggests Centre to allow metro services for govt staff, those engaged in essential services

Kejriwal in his letter also said that though the number of COVID-19 cases will increase due to relaxations in the lockdown post May 17, the Delhi government has made sufficient arrangements of hospitals, intensive care units, ambulances and ventilators. The nationwide lockdown was imposed from March 25 to April 14, then extended to May 3 and again to May 17 to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus.

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The Chief Minister said that at work places in the national capital, the use of Aarogya Setu app will be made mandatory. The recommendations also include restrictions on movement of individuals for non-essential activities between 9 pm and 5 am. In his recommendations to the Prime Minister, Kejriwal said four-wheelers will be allowed, but with two passengers, except driver, post May 17.

He added that for two-wheelers, pillion rider should not be allowed. For central and Delhi government employees, Delhi metro services should be permitted from 7.30 am to 10.30 am and 5.30 pm to 8.30 pm, Kejriwal said in his recommendations to the Centre. People providing essential services and having e-passes should be allowed to travel on metro from 10.30 am to 5.30 pm, he said.

"The Govt of NCT of Delhi shall review its implementations after one week and widen its scope accordingly," Kejriwal said, adding that social distancing will be strictly followed. He also said that all private offices, irrespective of their location, can operate with up to 50 per cent strength as per requirement, with remaining persons working from home.

"At work places, provision of thermal scanning, hand wash, sanitisers will be made at all entry and exit points...use of Aarogya Setu app shall be made compulsory. Person's above 65 years of age, pregnant women and children below the age of 10 years shall stay at home except for meeting essential requirements and for health purpose," the chief minister said.

The government has already suggested opening of markets, shopping complexes and operation of buses and metro services with strict social distancing norms. It has also suggested operation of construction activities and that movement of labourers within Delhi be allowed, sources in the government told PTI.

Taxis with two passengers will be allowed, they said, adding that in buses, 20 passengers are likely to be allowed to travel under strict social distancing norms. "The government has suggested that opening of markets, complexes and malls should be allowed in Delhi. However, shops engaged in non-essential items in shopping complexes and malls should be allowed to operate on odd-even basis," a source said.

No relaxation in lockdown restriction: Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal

In next two-three days, the government will come out with a standard operating procedure to allow economic activities from Monday in the national capital. The nationwide lockdown was imposed from March 25 to April 14, then extended to May 3 and again to May 17 to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus.

(with PTI inputs)

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