Mizoram chief minister Zoramthanga on Wednesday said his government is contemplating on the extension of lockdown beyond May 31.
The nationwide lockdown 4.0 imposed to break the chain of coronavirus spread will end on May 31.
The chief minister told reporters that extension of lockdown is crucial in view of the present situation as thousands of people are returning to the State from different parts of the country.
However, officials and medical experts will consider the matter to take a final decision, he said.
“Mizoram is currently witnessing a peak in return of stranded people from outside and we believe that it is not strategically safe to abruptly lift lockdown and set people free at such juncture. I think we will have to extend lockdown for more days,” the chief minister said, adding that final decision would be made later after consultation among officials and experts.
On the existing lockdown rules, which according to experts can pose a big threat to public safety, Zoramthanga said his government will either amend the guidelines or make it more rigid as suggested by officials if lockdown is extended.
Mizoram as of now is COVID-19 free state after its lone patient, who tested positive on March 24, have recovered and discharged from Zoram Medical College (ZMC) near Aizawl on May 9 last.
Officials of Health department said all the eight COVID-19 patients in Mumbai’s Mizoram House and three others in Kolkata’s Mizoram House have also fully recovered.
They said 18 samples were tested at ZMC on Wednesday and results are awaited.
The results of 79 samples, which were tested on Tuesday, have come out negative, they added.
Meanwhile, state health minister Dr R Laltangliana urged officials of Health department and medical experts to be vigilant as new case of coronavirus could be detected at anytime with the arrival of thousands of stranded people from outside the State.
He also called for concerted effort to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the State.
Officials of state Home department said more than 3,000 people have so far returned to the State form different parts of the country.
They said that more than 10,000 people were yet to return.
The government has allowed the returnees clearing Rapid Antibody Test (RAT) and permitted or recommended by competent authorities to be placed under home quarantine as the government facilities might not be sufficient to accommodate all the returnees.
While the government required quarantine facilities to accommodate at least 20,000 inmates, there are over 500 facilities, including 168 church halls, with a capacity of only 14,358 people, officials said.