COVID-19 relief measures in India's largest and most populous state, Uttar Pradesh
"I want to assure the entire 23 crore population of Uttar Pradesh that we have made prior arrangements regarding the availability of food, food products and other essentials. There is adequate supply. I just have one appeal-stay at your homes and please do not step out to mandis and grocery stores," says Hon’ble Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, Yogi Adityanath.
This piece shows a glimpse into the relief measures undertaken by the Government of Uttar Pradesh, India’s largest state housing a population of more than 200 million.
In wake of the coronavirus outbreak, Uttar Pradesh was one of the first states to announce a partial lockdown of 15 districts in the state in the first phase from March 23-25, 2020. The announcement came soon after the Centre and state governments decided to put under lockdown nearly 80 districts across the country, where cases of novel coronavirus had been reported. Strict police and district administration patrolling characterized these districts with full force operation of 112 emergency service of the state police. The districts under lockdown were sanitised and cleanliness drives were conducted in full swing.
Taking the state lockdown to its second phase in complementary to the 21-day national lockdown, following measures are being undertaken:
1. For any health-related issues, 102 and 108 helpline numbers are functional 24*7
2. 112 helpline number is functional 24*7 for availing emergency services of the state police
3. Close to 4,500 police response vehicles (PRVs), 4,200 ambulances, as well as vehicles owned by government's food department and other government vehicles will help in delivering essential products at peoples' doorsteps
4. The state government has decided to set up 51 dedicated Covid-19 hospitals at its existing 24 Government and 27 private medical colleges and institutions
5. At present there were 4,500 isolation and quarantine beds available across medical colleges in Uttar Pradesh. This is being increased to 11,000 by the end of this week.
6. Exclusively dedicated to the Covid-19 patients, the state is setting up the Capital COVID Hospital (CCH), first of its kind in any state, in Lucknow. The CCH will have its own exclusive medical staff, infrastructure, laundry and medical waste system. It will also have 80-100 ventilators and 210 isolation and quarantine beds for high-risk patients. These hospitals would be made operational by the end of this week.
7. More than 20 lakh daily wage labourers in the state have already been disbursed Rs 1,000 as maintenance allowance through the process of direct benefit transfer (DBT). 15 lakh small self-employed workers running rickshaws, e-rickshaws, carts, small stores etc will also be disbursed the amount in this week
8. 1.65 crore families will be given 20 kg wheat and 15 kg rice as one month's stock of foodgrains
9. Under the Epidemic Act, district authorities have been asked to monitor private medical colleges and take appropriate action if they are not following the guidelines for setting up COVID hospitals
10. The health department, urban development department and the Panchayati Raj department are undertaking comprehensive cleanliness drive.
Apart from the hard measures listed above, the state is also undertaking mass awareness programmes, in which people are being told about how to sanitise themselves, and also adhere to social distancing through all means of electronic and social media. The Uttar Pradesh government stated on March 21, 2020 that 8 out of the 25 novel coronavirus patients in the state who were undergoing treatment have completely recovered and they will undertake all measures to curtail the spread of coronavirus.