Industries in Karnataka to resume activities from May 4

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Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa said that industries located in containment zones would not be allowed to begin operation though the COVID-19 menace is reducing and coming under control in the state.

The Karnataka Cabinet on Thursday (April 30) decided to grant permission to industries located across the state, except in containment areas, to resume their production activities from May 4.

Disclosing this to reporters, Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa said that industries located in containment zones would not be allowed to begin operation. He cautioned that the crisis triggered by the pandemic may last another couple of months.

However, he noted that the COVID-19 menace is reducing and 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 another 2-3 days,” Yediyurappa was quoted by Deccan Herald as saying.

Yediyurappa and Industries Minister Jagadish Shettar are scheduled to meet industry captains in the evening to discuss resuming operations from May 4. "It won't be a surprise if the corona continues for another 2-3 months. However, based on Prime Minister Narendra Modi's directions, stringent lockdown measures (at red zones) and reviving economic activity will go hand in hand," Yediyurappa said.

The Cabinet decided to allow one-time inter-state or inter-district movement of people and labourers stranded due to the Covid-19 lockdown. The move will also benefit students and others who want to return to their native states or districts.

The government will also allow people from Karnataka residing in other states to return but they should be tested negative for Covid-19, Law Minister JC Madhuswamy said. An official in this regard will be issued by evening, he added.

"Expenses should be covered by those wishing to travel. The government is willing to arrange buses for their benefit," Madhuswamy said. The government will provide a license to anyone who wishes to go, he said.

Having relaxed norms for industries outside red zones to resume operations, Madhuswamy said that inter-district passes will be issued to the top management of these units to travel from their homes to workplaces. Liquor outlets, saloons and restaurants will remain closed till May 3, after which the government will take a call based on 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 make some favourable decisions,” he added.

Meanwhile, three new coronavirus cases were reported as of 8:00 AM on Apr 30 in the state, according to data released by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare. This brings the total reported cases of coronavirus in Karnataka to 535. Among the total people infected as on date, 216 have recovered and 21 have passed away (with inputs from agencies).

Image Credit: The Hindu

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