Bengaluru, April 26 (IANS) Britain’s Justice Minister Robert Buckland has lauded Karnataka Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa for enforcing the strict lockdown to control the coronavirus spread in the southern state, an official said on Sunday.
“Lord Chancellor Buckland appreciated Yediyurappa for his measures to control the virus by strictly enforcing the lockdown across the southern state over the month,” an official told IANS after their interaction through video conferencing.
Buckland, designated Secretary of State for Justice, also sought advice from the Chief Minister on replicating his measures to contain the pandemic in his country Britain and how the state government maintained the supply chain to deliver food and essential goods to the people amid the lockdown.
Hundreds of Kannadigas living in Britain also joined the video conferencing from London and hailed the 77-year-old Chief Minister for battling the virus with minimal loss of life and damage to the state’s economy.
“I shared with Buckland our strategy to fight the disease by declaring a 15-day shutdown since March 15 in 9 districts, including Bengaluru before the 21-day national lockdown from March 25 to April 14, screening of foreign returnees, tracing, testing and quarantining the infected since a month,” the Chief Minister said.
Unlike other states in the southern region and across the country, Karnataka registered just 503 Covid-19 positive cases, including 302 active, 182 recovered and only 19 dead till date.
“With timely interventions and planning, we have been able to contain the virus spread so far to mostly primary and secondary contacts of the positive cases and kept the situation under control to partially ease curbs on the movement of people and goods across the districts except the hotspots and containment zones,” asserted Yediyurappa.
Buckland also expressed surprise that Covid-19 did not enter rural India so far.
Yediyurappa also assured the stranded Kannadigas in Britain not to worry about their elders, parents and relatives in the state, as they were being looked after by his government and other stakeholders.
“We have set up 24×7 helplines, app-based services, websites, portals and a war room to monitor the situation and respond to the crisis, fueled by suspending buses, trains and domestic/overseas flights,” the official said.
The chief minister also assured Kannadigas stranded in the UK and Europe of special planes for their return to the state when international flights resume once the extended lockdown is lifted after May 3 and restrictions eased gradually during May.