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Lockdown flashpoint: Centre directs Mamata Banerjee to cooperate with COVID-19 crew

West Bengal has thus far reported 392 instances and 12 deaths.

The Centre on Tuesday wrote to West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee directing her to cooperate with the central groups despatched to evaluate the state of affairs in areas the place lockdown was not being enforced successfully. The Ministry of Home Affairs stated that it had been delivered to its discover that each the inter-ministerial groups at Kolkata and Jalpaiguri had not been supplied with the requisite co-operation by the state and native authorities. “In fact, they have been specifically restrained from making any visits interacting with health professionals and assessing the ground level situation,” the MHA stated in its letter to the Bengal CM.

The Ministry additional stated that this amounted to obstructing the implementation of the orders issued by the central authorities below the Disaster Management Act 2005. “You are, therefore, directed to comply with the MHA order dated April 19, 2020 and make all necessary arrangements for the IMCTs (Inter-Ministerial Central Teams) to carry out such responsibilities as have been entrusted to them,” the ministry stated, including that the Supreme Court too has made comparable observations on this regard. The letter comes shortly after a video emerged displaying BSF and state officers escorting the groups despatched by the Centre.

The Centre on Monday constituted two inter-ministerial groups to make on-spot evaluation of state of affairs at Kolkata, Howrah, Medinipur East, 24 Parganas North, Darjeeling, Kalimpong and Jalpaiguri in West Bengal. The mandate for the central crew is to deal with complaints of implementation of lockdown, provide of important commodities, social distancing, preparedness of well being infrastructure, security of well being professionals and circumstances of the aid camps for labour and poor individuals.

Shortly after this, Mamata Banerjee requested the Centre to clarify the idea of constituting such groups. “Until then, I am afraid, we would not be able to move ahead on this as without valid reasons this might not be consistent with the spirit of federalism,” she stated in a collection of tweets. Moments after placing out tweets, Banerjee once more wrote a letter to Prime Minister Modi and complained why the Home Ministry didn’t inform the state earlier than dispatching the groups. She stated the Home Minister had spoken to her over the cellphone at about 1 pm concerning the go to of the central groups however that they had already landed in Kolkata at 10:10 am, a lot earlier than their dialog.

Since yesterday, a full fledged disagreement erupted between the Centre and Mamata Banerjee. While the Centre has been accusing the state authorities of not implementing the lockdown measures, Mamata Banerjee has stated there have been no lockdown violations in her state and observations made by the Home Ministry have been devoid of any information. West Bengal has thus far reported 392 instances and 12 deaths.

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