Mumbai | Jagran Education Desk: All schools, colleges and educational institutions across the country were closed after Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced a nationwide lockdown from March 25 due to the coronavirus crisis. Though the Centre has allowed schools and colleges to reopen in a "graded manner", several states, including Maharashtra and Delhi, have still not reopened them, looking at the safety of the students.

However, Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Sunday gave a hint on the reopening of educational institutions in the state and said that his government might allow schools to reopen after Diwali.

"We are considering to reopen schools after Diwali while taking all precautionary measures," Thackeray was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.

He also informed that places of worship might also reopen in Maharashtra after Diwali, adding that his government is in talks with the Centre for the resumption of Mumbai local services for the general public.

"Pollution can increase the impact of COVID-19. I appeal to people to not burn firecrackers rather lit earthen lamps. 15 days post-Diwali will be crucial, we should be cautious so that the need for lockdown does not arise again," Thackeray appealed.

Meanwhile, Thackeray had on Saturday reportedly said that the state government might allow students of classes 9th to 12th to visit their schools from November 23. However, no official statement was made on this by the state government. He also had said that a second wave of COVID-19 pandemic cannot be ruled and all necessary precautions need to be taken.

"We need to be extra cautious after Diwali. Quarantine centres in schools cannot be shut. The local administration can take a decision regarding alternative places for classrooms. Sanitization of schools, coronavirus tests for teachers and other precautions are a must," Thackeray was quoted as saying by news agency PTI.

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma