Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani on Saturday urged sarpanchs in the state to take steps for making their villages coronavirus-free in the next 15 days.
He made the appeal during a virtual meeting with the village heads on the occasion of Gujarat's Foundation Day.
The foundation day was celebrated in a low-key manner in view of the coronavirus situation and death of 18 COVID-19 patients in a hospital fire in Bharuch earlier in the day.
Interacting with the village heads in the state from Gandhinagar, Mr Rupani said they should pledge to make their areas coronavirus-free by forming committees, and by tracking and treating suspected patients.
In a tweet, he said, "On the occasion of the Gujarat Foundation Day, interacting with sarpanchs of various villages through the CM Dashboard under the state-wide campaign ''Maru Gaam Korona Mukta Gaam,'' (my village, coronavirus-free village)."
Governor Acharya Devvrat and senior officials also joined Mr Rupani as he interacted with thousands of village heads through the CM Dashboard, the state's administrative command and control system.
A detailed presentation was made on the pandemic situation in Gujarat and steps being taken to control it.
The Chief Minister and the governor also condoled the death of COVID-19 patients in Bharuch hospital fire.
"The (COVID-19 pandemic) situation is serious and a cause for concern. Such a pandemic occurs once in a century.
No state in the country, and no district in Gujarat remains unaffected. We are fighting against the pandemic with the triple T strategy - maximum testing, maximum tracing, and maximum treatment," Mr Rupani said in his address.
The government is working with public participation to bring the situation under control, he said, urging sarpanchs to set up committees in villages to trace COVID-19 patients and provide proper, timely treatment so that the cases don't increase.
"Let us pledge not to let the number of cases increase and let us become free of coronavirus. Form committees of 10 people each across Gujarat's 14,000 gram panchayats to make villages coronavirus free in 15 days," he said.
The chief minister also appealed to the village heads to ensure that people get vaccinated at the earliest.
The governor also appealed to sarpanchs to implement these suggestions and asked them to hold meetings, form committees and set up isolation centres in community halls and schools in villages.
"Implement a strong lockdown in villages, where no outsiders are allowed entry. Run a public awareness campaign advising that people suffering from cough, fever or allied symptoms be taken to isolation centres set up within villages," he asked the village heads.
Gujarat was carved out of Bombay State on this day in 1960.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)