Bengaluru will once again go into a lockdown from 8 pm on July 14 to 5 am on July 22 to slow the spread of the coronavirus, Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa said on Saturday. Detailed guidelines of the lockdown will be declared on Monday.
All essential services including supply of milk, vegetables, fruits, medicines and groceries will continue uninterrupted, the chief minister said in a tweet.
"I appeal to people to cooperate with the government, follow all guidelines, take all precautionary steps and help us contain the pandemic," he tweeted. He said the decision was taken with suggestions from experts to curb the growing number of cases.
Mr Yediyurappa complemented the efforts of ASHA workers, doctors, medical staff, police, officials and the media who are working to control the spread of virus.
Earlier, the sprawling city had been divided into eight zones which were being monitored by ministers.
Despite the spike in coronavirus cases, the state government had earlier said it against any re-imposition of the lockdown, beyond the Sunday lockdown, that has been announced for this month. This was reiterated by ministers just a couple of days ago.
Bengaluru Urban district has the highest number of cases in Karnataka accounting for more than half of the state's new cases over the last several days. Bengaluru has reported 1,533 new cases today taking the total tally to 16,862 with 229 deaths.
With the spike in cases, the city has seen long waits for ambulances and struggles to find a hospital bed. State Education Minister Dr K Sudhakar had said that the spike after "Unlock 1" had come earlier than anticipated.
As of this evening, a total of 36,216 coronavirus cases have been confirmed in the state, which includes 613 deaths and 14,716 discharges, a government bulletin said.
Several other states have extended the lockdown amid rising cases. Bengal had announced a lockdown till July 31 and has stopped flights from worst-affected cities till July 19.
Nagaland has also extended the lockdown till July 31. Guwahati will also be under lockdown till July 19. Arunachal Pradesh also extended the lockdown in its capital complex comprising Itanagar, Naharlagun, Nirjuli and Banderdewa for another week till July 20 in view of the spurt in COVID-19 cases in the region.