Mumbai, March 14 (IANS) With another four persons testing positive for coronavirus in the state on Saturday, the total number of cases in Maharashtra climbed to 26 with the state government shutting down all schools, colleges, anganwadis and shopping malls in all urban centres.
Yavatmal District Collector M.D. Singh informed the media that two cases turned positive in Yavatmal on Saturday. The two affected were among nine persons with a recent history of travelling to Dubai. The seven others tested negative.
Besides, a health official of the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai, Daksha Shah, said that one more positive case was found in Mthe city, taking the total cases to five so far.
The total number of patients undergoing treatment in the state include 10 in Pune, five in Mumbai, four in Nagpur, two in Yavatmal and one each in Thane, Kalyan, Vashi, Raigad and Ahmednagar.
In a potential scare, a senior citizen who recently returned from Dubai and was showing symptoms, passed away in Buldhana and his samples have been sent for testing to confirm his Covid-19 status.
Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope informed the state Assembly that as a precautionary measure, the state government has directed all schools, colleges and malls in urban centres to remain shut till March 31.
However, the timetables of the ongoing SSC-HSC examinations will not be disturbed and shall continue as announced.
The shutdown will also be applicable to other educational institutions like coaching classes.
Meanwhile, Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar has urged the people to celebrate weddings and other functions only at the family level to avoid large gatherings. He also warned that those cinemas/multiplexes which flout the ban order issued on Friday would attract stringent action.
Home Minister Anil Deshmukh said that the government has ordered a medical checkup on all prisoners or undertrials lodged in different jails across the state for Covid-19.
The Mumbai Diamond Merchants Association (MDMA) on Saturday cancelled its upcoming elections on March 17 followed by its AGM on March 21 till further orders.
In a statement, MDMA President Mahendra V. Gandhi said that a meeting was held on Saturday with the office-bearers of Bharat Diamond Bourse (BDB) and the Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) to discuss ways and means to keep diamond factories and workshops free of coronavirus, especially since it employs a large number of youth from Gujarat and Maharashtra.
Earlier, the IIT-Bombay announced suspension of all classrooms and laboratory instructions till March 29 besides imposing a series of precautionary restrictions on students, foreigners, day scholars and hostellers, faculty, staff, visitors etc.
Meanwhile, health officials said that the condition of all the patients undergoing treatment at various isolation wards around the state is “stable”.