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Meghalaya announces partial relaxation of lockdown

By Staff Correspondent

SHILLONG, April 6 - The Meghalaya Government announced partial relaxation of lockdown from today, but educational institutions would remain closed till the end of this month.

The decision was taken after a Cabinet meeting here which was chaired by Chief Minister Conrad Sangma together with Deputy Chief Minister Prestone Tynsong and other Cabinet ministers.

Tynsong while briefing the Press said since this is the sowing season, farmers could start agricultural activities �immediately.�

Moreover, restriction on MGNREGA-related development works has also been lifted and beneficiaries can resume such works in their respective villages.

The Government, Tynsong informed, has sanctioned and released wages and material components worth over Rs 534 crore. This amount has been released to the respective BDOs for payment of wages and also clearing of bills.

However, the Deputy CM cautioned that protocols as prescribed by the Health Department from time to time would have to be followed by everyone.

From April 15 after the lockdown period is over, more activities would resume, but in a staggered manner. Construction works like roads, bridges and other allied development programmes sanctioned last year would resume across the State from April 15.

The weekly markets will also be allowed to open. These weekly markets called Haats spread across the rural areas of the State are the lifeline for some of the remote villages across the State.

After the lockdown period, government employees would get back to work and private transportation will also be allowed to ply on the streets, Tynsong said.

Though these activities would start in a phased manner, but educational institutions would remain closed. �Educational institutions would remain closed till April 30,� Tynsong said.

He added that any decision to reopen these institutions would be taken after a thorough review meeting of the Education Department.

On people from the state stranded outside, Tynsong said that they would have to be patient and stay put at their respective places for the time being.

Altogether, 2,192 people from the State, including students, have been identified who are stranded outside the State. Tynsong said, these people want to come back, but have been told to stay back for their safely as well as for the people of the State.

Meanwhile, the Cabinet has decided to extend financial assistance to the weaker section of the society that includes daily wage earners, labourers and small traders.

Under the package, Rs 700 per week would be transferred to the accounts of the eligible beneficiaries from the CM�s relief fund.

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