Bhopal | Jagran News Desk: Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Thursday announced that his government has decided to impose a complete lockdown in all the urban areas of the state from 6 pm on Friday till 6 am on April 12 in wake of the alarming rising in coronavirus cases across the country.

"For cities where cases have increased, appropriate action will be taken after meeting of the crisis management group. We're making containment areas in big cities," Chouhan was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.

The lockdown comes at a time when coronavirus cases in Madhya Pradesh have been rising at an alarming rate. On Wednesday, the state had reported more than 4,000 fresh coronavirus cases, taking the total caseload to over 3.18 lakh. The state health department also said that 13 COVID-19 fatalities were reported during the same period. 

As per the state health department, Indore and Bhopal continue to remain the worst affected cities in the state with over 74,000 and 55,000 coronavirus cases. The two cities had on Wednesday reported 866 and 618 new cases respectively. 

Looking at the alarming spike, the Shivraj Singh Chouhan-led Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government had earlier imposed a weekend lockdown in seven districts -- Betul, Chhindwara, Ratlam, Khargone, Bhopal, Indore and Jabalpur -- of the state. It had also urged people to follow all necessary COVID-19 protocols and get vaccinated as soon as possible.

The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has also expressed concerns over the spike in coronavirus cases in Madhya Pradesh and held several high-level meetings with the state government. However, the Health Ministry has noted that weekend lockdowns and night curfews won't help much in controlling the COVID-19 infections while adding that vaccination on mass scale is the only way forward. 

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma