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Pay cuts for Maharashtra MLAs, MLCs

The Maharashtra Cabinet on Thursday decided to cut the salaries of MLAs and MLCs by 30% till April 2021.

The meeting, chaired by Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar, also discussed various measures needed for the containment of novel coronavirus in Mumbai, including use of State Reserve Police Force (SRPF) in congested areas to ensure strict observation of lockdown.

“Increasing number of positive patients in Mumbai is a sign of worry for all of us. We discussed a number of measures to be taken to restrict the spread and one of them was strict implementation of lockdown,” said Health Minister Rajesh Tope.

The Home Minister was also requested to use drones and CCTVs extensively to keep an eye on crowded areas so that immediate action could be taken by Mumbai Police and SRPF, Mr. Tope said.

“It has also been observed that small houses in chawls and slums is a major reason for people coming out on streets,” he said. The Cabinet has directed Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) to explore the option of opening schools to let people in the vicinity stay inside. Elected representatives from the area have been asked to look at setting up more community kitchens.

“We discussed the condition of public toilets and the increase of cases in Dharavi,” said Mr. Tope adding that sanitisation is a huge issue as over 200 people use one block of toilet daily.

The fire brigade will be asked to use power jets to clean public toilets regularly, and an option of using drones to clean toilets will also be worked out, the Cabinet decided. BMC is also setting up disinfectant tunnels.

The Cabinet meanwhile, decided to not organise any grand celebration on Maharashtra Day on May 1. There will be no parades and flag hoisting will be held only in the presence of guardian ministers of respective districts, district collector and select invitees.

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