Mumbai: Amid the nationwide lockdown to check the spread of coronavirus, Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Wednesday appealed to people not to venture out of their homes and assured that the state has adequate stock of essential commodities.
Greeting people on the occasion of Gudi Padwa, celebrated as the Hindu New Year in the state, Thackeray said the poor and daily wagers should understand that the government stands firmly behind them in this time of crisis.
"There is enough stock of essential commodities and the essential services will continue to function," he said.
The chief minister also said that corporates were coming forward to set up hospitals and manufacture masks.
"I appeal to employers not to cut wages of their workers or stop their services....don't flock the markets. To purchase essential commodities, go to market alone and maintain distance (with one another). We will win this war and celebrate Gudi Padwa as usual," he said.
He said in a war, the threat from the enemy is because one does not know how he will attack.
"Here, the virus is our enemy. If we venture out, the virus may attack usand enter our homes. This is just like a war time when it has to be ensured that planes are not seen on the enemy's radar. By now, hope you have understood the seriousness and gravity of the situation," Thackeray said.
He also asked people to stop using the air conditioning systems at home.
"Air conditioning will bring cooling, moisture and humidity. Instead, go for natural ventilation," he said.
On a lighter note, Thackeray said, "We are in 'Chala Hawa You Dya' (move aside, let some air come in) for more than two years now."
He was apparently referring to a popular Marathi show 'Chala Hawa You Dya' aired on a television channel.
"Let's breathe more fresh air," he added..
Thackeray also said that when people ask him what is he doing in the present situation, he says 'I listen to Mrs Mukhyamantri, you listen to your home minister'.
"Mrs Mukhyamantri" and "Home Minister" are the other two television shows on the Marathi channel.
"There is a positive side to this crisis as well," the chief minister pointed out, saying families have come together and are spending time with each other.
Some are spending time reading books, playing indoor games, taking out their musical instruments and playing them, he noted.
"What we had lost, we can regain now," he said.