Left Menu
Development News Edition

India's capital reopens public transport as nearby Chinese-owned factory is hit by outbreak

Reuters | New Delhi | Updated: 18-05-2020 20:21 IST | Created: 18-05-2020 19:46 IST
India's capital reopens public transport as nearby Chinese-owned factory is hit by outbreak

India's capital New Delhi and some other state governments ordered the re-opening of public transport on Monday in a further easing of a nearly two-month coronavirus shutdown. Under the new rules, buses, taxis, and three-wheelers will return to the streets but with restrictions. Buses will not carry more than 20 passengers, each of whom will be screened before boarding, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said.

"Corona will stay, and we will also survive," Kejriwal said, outlining the new guidelines for the city of 20 million people that has one of highest numbers of coronavirus cases in the country. However, a factory of the Chinese smartphone maker OPPO near Delhi suspended operations after six workers tested positive for the coronavirus.

The factory had received government permission to resume limited production as part of a gradual relaxation of the shutdown that began on March 25. But when OPPO tested workers prior to the restart, six tested positives for COVID-19, said Deep Chandra, senior official at the Greater Noida Industrial Development Authority.

OPPO said in a statement that operations at the plant were suspended and it would only allow employees with negative test results to resume work. The southern state of Karnataka, home to technology hub Bengaluru, also lifted some restrictions on the movement of trains, taxis, and buses within the state. Transportation from outside the state will remain suspended except for essential services.

Experts say that coronavirus cases will rise in coming weeks as India's lockdown is eased, and authorities have repeatedly told companies resuming operations to ensure that social distancing and other measures are taken to prevent infections. MIGRANT WORKERS

India has seen a rapid rise in coronavirus infections in recent days, with confirmed cases at around 96,000 and more than 3,000 deaths, according to federal data. On Sunday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government extended the nationwide lockdown to May 31, but relaxed rules in areas with lower numbers of cases and allowed state governments to issue their own guidelines on some matters.

With the restrictions eased, some traffic poured back onto the roads of the capital, and hairdressers, beauty parlors, stationery shops, and butchers were among the small businesses reopening elsewhere in the country. But schools, malls, and other public places will remain mostly closed, and large gatherings are still prohibited.

Compounding the challenges for the country, hundreds of millions of migrant workers have been stranded across India for weeks, unable to return home after authorities banned all transport services in late March. After a series of road and rail accidents, where dozens of workers died, authorities are now increasing efforts to help them home.

In the southern city of Chennai, construction worker M.D. Rustom queued along with hundreds of others for a bus and train trip back to the eastern state of Bihar, some 2,000 km away. "We don't have money to eat," he said. "It has been over 50 days, we just want to go back now.


TRENDING

OPINION / BLOG / INTERVIEW

Why COVID-19 is unstoppable in USA despite it being ranked at the top of GHS Index?

Several worst-hit countries such as Italy, France, Spain, the UK, Canada, and Russia have peaked COVID-19 cases in April. Almost all of them have gradually flattened the curve. However, the USA is setting new daily records of infections tha...

COVID-19 seems cooking biggest ever global scam

The increasing number of corruption cases on COVID-19 funds from throughout the world and involvement of high profile persons indicate that the countries cant ignore corruption in their pandemic response programs. This has generated the nee...

Health Management Information Systems lack holistic, integrated, and pandemic resilient character

Being a part of the United Nations system, the World Health Organization WHO deserves its share of rebuke for its alleged failure issue COVID-19 health emergency alerts on appropriate time. However, the pandemic has also exposed loopholes i...

Pride in the time of coronavirus: a welcome move online?

This year is different in many ways not least as celebrations are also taking place against the dramatic backdrop of a global health crisis and a resurgence in grassroots activism following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. ...

Videos

Latest News

Iran's president calls for ban on weddings, wakes to halt virus spread

Irans President Hassan Rouhani called on Saturday for big gatherings such as weddings and wakes to be banned to stem a rise in coronavirus infections, but insisted the countrys economy had to stay open. Shortly after Rouhanis televised spee...

Motor racing-Rain washes out final practice for Styrian GP

Rain washed out final practice for the Styrian Formula One Grand Prix at Austrias Red Bull Ring on Saturday, with qualifying uncertain. Stewards said in a statement that the session had been canceled on the recommendation of the governing F...

Dubey's family, maid returned to Lucknow after cremation: Police

Vikas Dubeys wife, son and maid, who were picked up by the STF for questioning in connection with the deadly ambush of a police team, returned to their home in Lucknow after the gangsters cremation in Kanpur, police said on Saturday. The ga...

Germany could take further public stakes in companies - minister

Germany will take further stakes in companies threatened by the coronavirus crisis, Economy Minister Peter Altmaier said, adding that probably a few dozen firms might follow airline group Lufthansa in passing into partial state ownership. S...

Give Feedback