Mumbai | Jagran News Desk: Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar on Saturday evening hinted that the Uddhav Thackeray-led Maha Vikas Aghadi government might further relax the coronavirus-induced in the state with a reduction in daily cases. Speaking to reporters, Pawar said that the Maharashtra government is mulling relaxing curbs for fully-vaccinated people.

Noting that this will encourage people to get vaccinated as soon as possible, Pawar said that the government might also extend the timings of shops and restaurants from the current deadline of 4 pm to 7 pm.

"We are thinking of extending the timing for shops and restaurants but the final decision will be taken by the CM. We are meeting with experts on Monday after which a decision will be taken on relaxations on weekends," Pawar was quoted as saying by news agency PTI.

Maharashtra was the first state in India to imposed a complete lockdown this year to stop the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the Thackeray government is relaxing curbs with a reduction in active cases in the state.

Meanwhile, Pawar said that the Thackeray government is also focussing on the possible third wave that might hit India in August or September this year. He said that the state government is "augmenting the medical infrastructure" to counter the third wave.

"There are reports about the possibility of a third wave. Based on reports of the high occupancy of beds in hospitals, oxygen beds, ventilator beds and the demand for medical oxygen and other facilities in the first and second waves, we are preparing to brace for a possible third wave of the pandemic in the Pune district," PTI quoted Pawar as saying.

Maharashtra -- the worst-hit state in India -- currently has more than 98,000 active COVID-19 cases, as per the Union Health Ministry data. Around 6.02 lakh patients have recovered from the infection while over 1.31 lakh have succumbed to the pathogen in the state, the Health Ministry data stated.

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma