Maharashtra Cabinet Minister Jitendra Awhad has expressed fear that Covid-19 cases may rise in Thane's Mumbra township if residents do not take adequate precautions during the relaxation of lockdown from Monday.
Talking to reporters on Sunday night, Awhad, who is an MLA from Kalwa-Mumbra constituency of Thane district and himself suffered from Covid-19 in April, appealed to people to maintain social distancing and follow all safety guidelines.
Till Sunday, Thane district reported 11,359 Covid-19 cases, which includes a number of cases from Mumbra area.
The number of cases in Mumbra was high as people were moving around freely, Awhad said, and asked residents to exercise restraint.
When the number of Covid-19 cases has come down in Dharavi slum area of neighbouring Mumbai and Malegaon township of Nashik district, why it can't happen in Mumbra, the minister said, while seeking cooperation of citizens in containing the spread of the viral infection.
He said additional facilities for testing, ventilators and oxygen supply were being provided and the government would take all steps to ensure lives of people are saved.
Awhad asked local doctors not to treat people having fever and Covid-19 symptoms and instead, refer them to testing centres as specified by the government and the civic body.
He also urged people to adhere to quarantine and isolation guidelines and not violate them.
The minister said he lost almost 12 kg weight while suffering from Covid-19 and despite doctors advising him not to step out of home for two months, he preferred to be in the midst of "his people to serve them and save their lives".
Just by sending messages on social media will not help people and one has to come out to provide assistance to those suffering, he said.