Bengaluru: The Karnataka government has decided to allow industrial activities across the state barring coronavirus containment zones from May 4, when the second phase of national lockdown is expected to end, Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa said on Thursday. As COVID-19 cases may continue for another 2-3 months, both economic activities and efforts to control the pandemic have to go hand-in-hand, he said. "So, we have decided to give permission to start industrial activities in all places, except containment zones from May 4," Yediyurappa told reporters here after a cabinet meeting. He will hold discussion with some industrialists along with Industries Minister Jagdish Shettar soon, he said adding the government would ask them to make preparations for restarting industrial activities. On easing curbs in the state capital, he said: "There is a feeling that COVID-19 is in a way coming to control... there has been not much cases in Bengaluru area in the last three- four days, we are seeing, if things continue it will help us start some activities here too. We will wait and see for couple of days. Earlier, the state government had on April 8 decided to conditionally allow economic activities to restart in green zones by opening of shops and industries. Noting that it will not be a surprising if the coronavirus cases continue for another 2-3 months, Yediyurappa said on one side economic activities will have to start and on the other side measures to contain its spread. By May 4, more directives were likely to come from the Centre and the state would then decide on more economic activities that can be allowed, he added. Responding to a question about allowing malls and cinema halls and others to function, the Chief Minister said all these will be discussed after May 4. "As of now we don't have any plans to open malls, hotels, but parcels as take-away are allowed at hotel...other things will depend on the Centre's directives. I'm confident that PM may permit all activities, it is the expectation of all states," he said. Appreciating media for its role in educating people about COVID-19 and measures that need to be taken to control it, Yediyurappa appealed for restraint while publishing news that may push people into depression and fear at this time of crisis. He asked the media to build confidence among people by publishing positive news about recoveries, efforts of COVID warriors and said, government was always ready to take suggestion from it.
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