PM Narendra Modi to meet chief ministers on June 16 and 17 amid massive surge in COVID-19 cases

NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi will hold a fresh round of consultation with chief ministers of states and Union Territories next week as the country gradually emerges out of coronavirus lockdown. According to reports, the PM will interact with CMs of 21 states/UT on June 16 and June 17 via video-conference.

Sources said that the States/UTs could be divided into two slots for the two-day virtual meeting with the PM.

He will hold interaction with the chief ministers of Punjab, Assam, Kerala, Uttarakhand, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Tripura, Himachal, Chandigarh, Goa, Manipur, Nagaland, Ladakh, Puducherry, Arunachal, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Dadar Nagar Haveli & Daman Diu, Sikkim & Lakshadweep on June 16 and 17.

The meet comes against the backdrop of the rising number of coronavirus cases in the country.

Under “Unlock 1.0,” the Centre and state governments have eased several restrictions for the public and businesses to ensure that economic activities hit by the lockdown gather momentum.

This would be the Prime Minister’s sixth round of consultation with the chief ministers, the last being on May 11. Union Home Minister Amit Shah spoke with all the chief ministers over the telephone in the last week of May, just before lockdown-4 was to end.

India recorded more than 10,000 cases in the last 24 hours for the very first time since the outbreak making it the highest jump recorded in a day. The total tally crossed 2.9 lakh on Friday and the death toll was at 8498.

As per the Ministry of Health data, 10956 news cases and 396 deaths were recorded in the last 24 hours since Thursday 8 am taking the total tally to 297,535 which includes 141,842 active cases, 147,194 recovered cases, 1 migrant patient, and 8,498 deaths.

Maharashtra, the state with the highest number of confirmed cases has reported 97,648 cases. The state also witnessed 150 coronavirus-related deaths during the same time and its Covid-19 death toll is now 3,590. Tamil Nadu is second only to Maharashtra with 38,716 confirmed cases followed by Delhi with 34,687 cases and Gujarat with 22,067 cases.

The Health Ministry on Friday said that the doubling time of coronavirus infection cases in India has improved to 17.4 days currently from 15.4 days a couple of weeks ago. At the time the lockdown was imposed on March 25, the doubling rate of COVID-19 cases was 3.4 days, it said.

“The doubling rate/time continues to improve and has increased from 3.4 days at the beginning of lockdown to 17.4 days currently,” the Health Ministry said.

Apart from the improvement in the doubling rate, the Health Ministry said that the recovery rate of COVID-19 patients has also become better. “Recovery rate of COVID positive cases continues to increase and is currently stands at 49.47 per cent,” the ministry said.

A total of 1,47,194 people have recovered while 1,41,842 patients are under active medical supervision. In the 24 hour period till 8 am, a total of 6,166 patients have been cured of COVID-19, it said.