March 28, 2020

Gangtok, 27 Mar [IPR]: Chief Minister Prem Singh Tamang [Golay] chaired a high-level meeting of the State Task Force for Covid-19 prevention here at Samman Bhawan today. The meeting was convened to take stock of the preparedness of the State and to come up with immediate measures to provide relief to the people in the wake of the 21-day lockdown underway throughout the country.

After thorough deliberations, the Chief Minister announced a special economic package to provide immediate relief to the economically weaker section of the Sikkimese population:

Families with three or more members and not entitled to a government job will be provided relief by the State government in the form of: Rice, 20 kg; Dal, 5 kg; Cooking Oil, 5L; Salt, 1 kg; Potato, 7 kg; Onions, 2 kg.

Similarly, for families of two or fewer members and not entitled to a government job will be provided: Rice, 10 kg; Dal, 2 kg; Cooking Oil, 2L; Salt: 1 kg; Potato, 5 kg; Onion, 2 kg.

Meanwhile, the State Government has also decided that a daily wage of Rs 300 will be provided to labourers working at all Pharmaceutical units in the State throughout the period of the lockdown.

The State government also announced a one-time lump-sum monetary incentive of Rs 3000 each for Sikkim Police personnel actively engaged in screening and maintaining law and order for the prevention of Covid-19; All workers under Health Department posted in hospitals and check posts and engaged in screening and prevention of Covid-19; All truck drivers under Transport Department engaged in emergency duty for transportation of essential commodities during the lockdown period; and Safai Karamcharis under Urban Development Department on duty during the lockdown period.

The State government has also decided to provide insurance cover to all these frontline warriors.

Further, the State government has permitted the State Bank of Sikkim to extend a three-month moratorium on all its loans.

The Chief Minister has appealed to the people of Sikkim not to panic with regard to food supplies during the lockdown and assured that the State government has maintained ample stocks to last the next two months.

In case of any requirement of food and essential commodities, people have been requested to approach their respective BDOs or other designated officials. 

The Chief Minister also called for strict compliance of all the orders and circulars issued by the government in view of the 21-day lockdown and urged for cooperation from the public in order to successfully contain the local transmission of Covid-19 in the State.

He requested all to abide by the lockdown protocol and stay home.

He reassured the people that the Government is fully prepared to tackle the situation and lauded the efforts being made by frontline workers who are risking their lives to ensure the safety of the people of Sikkim, and appealed to the people not to let their efforts go in vain.

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