Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Saturday said that the national capital “cannot have a permanent lockdown”, even as he admitted that the city has been witnessing a surge in Coronavirus cases.
“We agree that the city has seen a huge spike in the number of coronavirus cases. But we should not panic. The situation in Delhi would be worrying for me in two scenarios – if the number of deaths increase and if there’s a shortage of hospital beds,” the Chief Minister said today during a video conference.
“A permanent lockdown is no solution. We have to move on with all the precautions,” Kejriwal added.
Although he termed the rising number of infections as a matter of concern, Kejriwal assured that the government is “fully prepared” and “four steps ahead” of the Coronavirus.
Delhi has so far recorded 17,386 with 398 deaths, and thereby is the third worst-hit state in the country.
Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, however, pointed out that out of the total patients, only 2100 are in hospitals while rest are undergoing treatment at their homes.
“Most of the people are recovering, and they are recovering at home. There is no need to panic,” he said.
He further added that 6500 beds are ready till date and 9500 more will be ready by another week.
On Monday, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had informed that 117 private hospitals have been asked to reserve 20 per cent beds for COVID-19 patients.
Further, in a warning to the private hospitals, Kejriwal said that Coronavirus patients “can’t be turned away”.
However, following the announcement, doctors warned that “mixing” Coronavirus-infected patients in hospitals treating people with other ailments might lead to a further spread of the virus.
Reacting on the government’s move, Dr Girish Tyagi, president of Delhi Medical Association, had said that the bigger challenge would be for the small hospitals as they do not have enough space to handle both COVID-19 and non-COVID patients at the same time, which would in turn become risky for all.