Flight for help
Representative photo. Image credit - https://economictimes.indiatimes.com

The Centre on Thursday decided to fly chartered flights in Northeastern states and other hilly regions for transportation of essentials items during the lockdown period.

The decision was taken to meet the challenges of hilly terrains and the unavailability of proper communication in these places.

“In Northeast and other remote areas of the country, the civil aviation ministry is arranging special flights. And accordingly, dedicated chartered helicopters will fly in those areas,” said Punya Salila Srivastava, a senior official in the Union home ministry.

As of Thursday, India has recorded 549 positive COVID-19 cases with only two cases from the northeastern region.

Manipur and Mizoram have registered one positive case each.

The COVID-19 pandemic has already affected 26 states and union territories across India with Maharashtra registering the highest number of positive cases (121), followed by Kerala (110).

Meanwhile, the department for the promotion of industry and internal trade (DPIIT) under the ministry of commerce and industry has launched a control room to monitor in real-time the status of manufacturing, transportation and delivery of essential commodities to the common man.

The decision to launch the control room has been taken keeping in view of the difficulties being faced by various stakeholders during the 21-day lockdown period from March 25 to April 14.

“In the event of any manufacturing, transporter, distributor, wholesaler or e-commerce companies facing ground level difficulties in transportation and distribution of goods or mobilization of resources,” officials said.

Dedicated phone number (+ 91- 1123062487) and email (controlroom-dpiit@gov.in) have also been floated for the purpose.

Officials said the telephone number will be functional from 8 am to 6 pm.

The issues reported by various stakeholders will be taken up by the department with the state governments, district and police authorities, and other agencies concerned.

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