Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav asked the Uttar Pradesh government to implement a four-day working week to contain the coronavirus pandemic instead of imposing a stricter lockdown on weekends.
He, however, said emergency services should operate round the clock on all days.
His reaction came on a day when the government decided to impose stricter curbs across the state from coming Saturday amid a spike in infection cases.
Additional Chief Secretary (Home and Information) Awanish Awasthi has said that the restrictions will remain in place at least for July.
"Instead of imposing a lockdown on weekends, the government should implement a four-day workweek system in view of the COVID-19 spread and it should be for a long period," Mr Yadav said.
"The government should concentrate on increasing the efficiency of the workforce and develop a new work culture so that nothing is affected," he added.
The Samajwadi Party leader said while Monday to Thursday should be working days, the closure should be effective from Friday to Sunday. "It will not only check the spread of the virus but also help people concentrate on their health," he said.
The coronavirus tally in Uttar Pradesh crossed the 35,000-mark after the state recorded the highest single-day spike of 1,403 cases on Saturday, a senior official said.