Lockdown #DAY2: Assam in 3 pronged work
Assam begins a three-pronged work on the second day of the lockdown as it luckily remains one of the six states of India where the virus has not yet spread.
The three-pronged battles are health department readiness, lockdown enforcement and distribution of essential services. However, all eyes are on those who have been home quarantined as thousands returned home from outside Assam and several hundred from outside the country.
Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal has taken the lead in resolving the essential service distribution problem with food and civil supply minister Phani Bhusan Chaudhury and transport minister Chandra Mohan Patowary with him.
On the other hand, Health Minister Dr. Himanta Biswa Sarma has been working round the clock to handle 2000 patients in the worst-case scenario by mobilizing field hospitals and revamping the critical care facilities of the existing one.
Thirdly the Assam Police has resolved to act tough to enforce the lockdown so that no one leaves home during the period.
However, the first challenge is to ensure the last mile connectivity of the essential commodities. Most of the grocery shops around the state have at best another day’s stock in hand but they are facing problems in getting the fresh stock from the go down to wholesale and then retail.
The Chief Minister met the food and civil supply officials as well as representatives of the traders association to find out an urgent way out. The Chief Minister expressed confidence that by Saturday all will be streamlined.
Meanwhile, massive planning is on in the health department to handle a worst-case scenario of 2000 patients. Two big indoor stadiums have been converted to makeshift hospital having altogether 1000 beds while six full-fledged hospitals have been dedicated to Corona Virus. The indoor stadium s are Sarusajai and Tarun Ram Phookan Indoor Stadium
The DGP Assam Police asserted that the police shall be tough to enforce. There will be caning against the violators. The grocery marketing can not be done in the car and it has to be by a walk with a market bag in hand. In the name of grocery shopping, loitering shall not be tolerated.
In Guwahati, shops will only be open from 1000-1300 hours and social distancing has to be maintained at any cost. The sellers have to prominently display their I card and pass system through Mobile is expected to be operational by Saturday.