Canindia News

Ahead of PM’s speech, AP CM shoots off letter favouring selective lockdown

Amaravati, April 13 (IANS) As the nation awaits to hear the Prime Minister’s next moves in his address to the nation on Tuesday morning, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy has written to him reiterating the need for selective lockdown in view of the state’s dependence on revenues from agri and aqua sectors.

“The state ranks first amongst all the states in the production of chilli, banana, coconut, tomato, brinjal, papaya, palm oil, tobacco, fish, prawn and poultry; second in paddy, groundnut, maize, mango and meat production; and third in milk production in addition to being the largest producer of fruits.

“For all these products, AP is the seller’s market with substantial portions being supplied to other states, besides being exported to other countries. However, the lockdown has caused immense supply chain disruptions, posing several difficulties in the marketing and transportation of the state’s agricultural, horticultural and aqua produce,” the Chief Minister wrote.

Apart from export markets such as the US and Europe, with the lockdown restricting access for the state’s aqua products to domestic markets like West Bengal, Assam, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh, Reddy pointed out that AP had suffered immensely.

Stressing upon the need to strike the right balance between containing the spread of Covid-19 and protecting the country’s economy, the Chief Minister proposed that the state be classified into Red, Orange and Green zones.

“This approach would ensure that the risks are adequately mitigated and at the same time, the adverse impact on the country’s economy is minimized,” he wrote in the letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

In line with his stand during the Prime Minister’s interaction with the Chief Ministers of the country, Reddy reiterated his support to Modi’s decisions in the matter.

The 21-day nationwide lockdown, which was called by the Prime Minister from March 24 midnight, comes to an end on Tuesday. In his address to the nation on Tuesday morning, the Prime Minister is expected to spell out the next course of action to tackle the Covid-19 outbreak in the country.

–IANS

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