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Will back Centre if it decides to extend lockdown beyond April 14: Puducherry CM

The chief minister said Puducherry is geographically surrounded by districts of Tamil Nadu and with the number of coronavirus cases rising.

April 08, 2020 / 08:19 AM IST

Chief Minister V Narayanasamy on Tuesday said his government will support the Centre if it decides to extend the ongoing nationwide lockdown to contain COVID-19 beyond April 14.

The chief minister said Puducherry is geographically surrounded by districts of Tamil Nadu and with the number of coronavirus cases rising there, protection of people of the union territory is a top priority for him.

"We feel saving the lives of the people of Puducherry is very important. We will therefore not hesitate to extend the lockdown which would come to an end on April 14 if the Centre takes a decision to extend it," he said.

As Cuddalore and Villupuram districts in neighbouring Tamil Nadu are reporting an increase in the number of COVID-19 cases, Puducherry being close them must remain "very cautious and vigilant", the chief minister said.

Narayanasamy said he would write a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressing his firm intention that if necessary, the lockdown should be extended beyond April 14.

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Noting that he had sought Rs 995 crore from the Centre to strengthen medical facilities in the union territory, Narayanasamy expressed "shock" and "surprise" over not being granted the fund.

"The other states have got the fund... I do not know the reason why Puducherry has been neglected by the Centre. Why have we been ignored?" asked the senior Congress leader.

"Surprisingly enough, we have not received any reply from the prime minister yet. I will again write to him for the fund," he added.

The chief minister was interacting with the media after holding a meeting with officials of private medical colleges to enlist their cooperation to combat the COVID-19 outbreak.

He said that has urged the seven private medical colleges to coordinate with the government medical college and hospital to implement steps to fight coronavirus in the union territory.
PTI

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