We have to learn to live with Coronavirus: CM Biren

The Manipur chief minister said that over 35,000 Manipuris have returned to the state within a period of five days and sought cooperation from the people in the fight against COVID-19.

Manipur Chief Minister N Biren Singh on Monday said that the people will have to learn to live with coronavirus while appealing to the public to wear face masks, use hand sanitizers and maintain social distancing.

Biren was speaking at the inauguration of a Plant Health Clinic at the directorate of Horticulture and Soil Conservation, Sanjenthong, Imphal. Condemning the act of the inmates residing at Waikhom Mani Girls College quarantine centre, Thoubal for vandalizing college properties on Sunday, Biren  asked the parents of the inmates of quarantine centres to advise their wards to maintain discipline, cooperation and adhere to the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) issued by the government.

Saying that over 35,000 Manipuris have returned to the state within a period of five days, he sought cooperation and support of the people in the fight against the dreaded disease.

Commenting on the Plant Health Clinic, he said that the economic growth of the state lies in the growth of sectors like agriculture, horticulture and Micro Small and Medium Enterprises. He also appreciated the officials of the horticulture department for setting up the plant clinic which he said would provide plant health diagnostic service to farmers.

He advised the officials of the department to conduct awareness campaigns about such clinics among the farmers and added that the state government has decided to give more emphasis on agriculture and horticulture sectors during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The state government has formed a Task Force to boost the horticulture and agriculture sectors, Biren said, adding that the priority of the government is to make Manipur a self-sufficient and self-reliant region. The government has taken up all the necessary steps in this regard, he added.

The chief minister appealed to the people to avoid usage of chemical fertilisers during cultivation of crops and hinted that unknown diseases might have occurred owing to the use of toxic chemicals and fertilisers. He further said that most of the indigenous crops and fruits are disappearing due to the lack of scientific research and practices.

The chief minister also launched a Mobile Soil Testing Laboratory Van during the function.

Deputy chairman of State Planning Board, S Rajen; principal secretary (Horticulture) P Vaiphei, director (Horticulture) N Joymati Devi, director (Agriculture) Laltanpuii Vanchhong, director (Veterinary & Animal Husbandry Services) Dr H Chaoba and others attended the inaugural function.

First Published:June 8, 2020, 10:37 p.m.

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