Omicron: Can’t impose Covid restrictions everywhere as it may impact economy: CM Mamata Banerjee


According to a report in Business Standard, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Thursday said coronavirus-related restrictions cannot be imposed everywhere as they may impact the economy as has been the case since the onset of the pandemic.

Speaking to reporters while visiting the Sagar Island in South 24 Parganas district where the annual Ganga Sagar Mela will begin next month, Banerjee said COVID-19 cases in Kolkata were rising as it was a transit point for people travelling on trains and flights.

“Most omicron cases are being detected among people coming on flights from the UK. It’s a fact that the omicron carriers are coming via international flights. The Centre must decide on imposing restrictions on flights from countries where omicron cases are high,” she said.

Banerjee said that her government was reviewing the emerging pandemic situation “seriously” and hinted that a decision will be taken regarding restriction, taking the economy into account.

“We have to look after the safety and security of the people. We will soon make a decision. We will target places where the cases are going up. We cannot impose restrictions everywhere because that may affect the economy as it has in the last two years,” she said.

West Bengal on Wednesday recorded a sharp rise in COVID-19 cases, recording 1,089 infections. Kolkata itself reported 540 new cases.

“COVID-19 cases in Kolkata are rising because it’s the transit point for people travelling on trains and flights. I will request everyone to follow COVID guidelines and wear masks,” Banerjee said as she boarded a helicopter for Kolkata, ending her three-day tour of the island after reviewing the preparedness for the religious congregation. (Business Standard)