Maharashtra extends lockdown till July 31

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Other states like Karnataka and Telangana, where infections are burgeoning, may have to follow suit

Health workers record the details of a woman during screening for coronavirus infection in Ramabhai Ambedkar Nagar in Ghatkopar East in Mumbai. Screening of citizens has been intensified in Mumbai as coronavirus infections continue to spread vigorously in India's financial capital. (DC Photo: Rajesh Jadhav)

Mumbai: The government of Maharashtra, the worst corona-affected  state in India, announced Monday that it would extend its lockdown restrictions till July 31.

This follows a decision by Tamil Nadu, the third worst-affected state to clamp stern restrictions on the state capital Chennai to contain the virus, whose spread has grown more vigorous in recent weeks.

Maharashtra's decision to extend its lockdown by a month is a certain indicator that other states such as Delhi, Telangana and Karnataka too will extend their restrictions in the hot spot areas

The current lockdown in Maharashtra was to end on June 30. Chief minister Uddhav Thackeray had on Sunday ruled out lifting the lockdown from that date.

An order issued by chief secretary Ajoy Mehta on Monday said wearing face covers or masks, maintaining social distancing, restricted gatherings, and other measures would continue to prevail.

The state government has also advised employers that work from home should be followed as much as possible.

Mehta's order said private offices can operate with up to 10 per cent strength or 10 people whichever is more.

On Monday afternoon, Maharashtra's coronavirus tally stood 1,64,626 after a surge of more than 5500 cases in each of the past two days. The state's death toll has gone up to 7429.