There will not be another complete lockdown in Bengaluru as the economy is equally important, Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa said on Friday, a day after he warned people to follow coronavirus precautions strictly if they don't want another shutdown.
"We are talking to elected representatives from Bengaluru from all parties. We are confident that we can beat Covid-19. We have everyone's support and cooperation. There is no question of another lockdown in Bengaluru as the economic situation is equally important. Lockdown is only for the areas that have already been shut down," he told reporters.
The Karnataka government has been receiving praise for keeping the coronavirus count in the state capital low compared to other big cities - Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai - that are reporting massive number of COVID-19 infections and deaths.
Bengaluru, however, has seen a sudden spurt in cases - it has 1,798 positive cases so far. Its doubling rate is now one week and central parts of the city including KR Market and Kalasipalyam Market have been sealed.
The Bengaluru urban district has the highest number of coronavirus infections in the state.
"I have confidence that if everyone (MLAs) pays special attention in their respective assembly constituency, COVID can be controlled," he was quoted as saying by news agency PTI.
His remarks come a day after Revenue Minister R Ashoka said Bengaluru was still "safe" compared to the COVID-19 situation in other cities and states and had ruled out a fresh lockdown for now, putting to rest speculations that it was planning such a move in view of spike in cases.
Earlier this week, B Sriramulu, the Karnataka health minister, had said the government may have to consider enforcing another lockdown in Bengaluru.
On Thursday, the Chief Minister, seeking cooperation from the people of Bengaluru, had said: "If you don't want Bengaluru to be sealed once again please cooperate and maintain distance".
India on Friday reported its biggest single-day spike in coronavirus cases, recording 17,296 infections in the last 24 hours.
With inputs from PTI