As COVID-19 cases in Maharashtra continue to rise, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray warned about the possibility of a new lockdown if the spread of the infection does not abate in the next few weeks.
While making an address on Sunday evening, Thackeray pointed out that number of daily new COVID-19 cases have doubled in the capital city of Mumbai - by far one of the worst hit cities in the country.
"If the (COVID-19) situation deteriorates, then we have to impose lockdown. Those who want lockdown can roam around without mask while those who don't want it must wear mask and follow all the rules," Thackeray said.
Maharashtra, the state with the highest number of cases, saw a sharp rise in new cases last Friday, with 6000 new cases reported that very day. On Sunday, the state reported 6971 new cases and 35 deaths, while Mumbai reported 921 new cases. The rise came after a few months of respite from new coronavirus infections, which has seen a sharp drop in the country as well.
The chief minister said it would take another 8 -15 days to assess whether the fresh rise in infections points to a second wave.
The coronavirus figures are rising. The state was reporting around 2000-2500 daily cases, while now it is reporting nearly 7,000. Active cases have jumped from 40000 to 53000. Last year, the numbers that we got during the Covid peak are almost equal to what we are getting now. Just think what would be the figures when we hit the peak again," he said.
Meanwhile, Commissioner of Mumbai Police Param Bir Singh posted a tweet, notifying that police officers in the city are now authorised to fine those not wearing a mask.