The Madhya Pradesh government will restrict the movement of people from neighbouring Chhattisgarh to curb the spread of coronavirus, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said on Sunday.

“The coronavirus situation in our neighbouring states is severe,” the chief minister said, while speaking to reporters. We have sealed the Maharashtra border already and will put restrictions on travel from Chhattisgarh.” The chief minister added that only goods transport and those traveling for exigencies will be allowed.

Noting that the number of infections in the state went past 3,000 on Sunday, as compared to 2,800 on Saturday, Chouhan said that he was not in favour of imposing a lockdown all over Madhya Pradesh and would only implement such restrictions in isolated pockets, depending upon the situation. “I don’t want such lockdowns because this affects businesses and employment,” the chief minister said. “Our priority is to protect the people without a lockdown.”

Authorities in four districts of the state had imposed lockdowns for varying durations in the last week.

The chief minister also said that he will make announcements on a loudspeaker on Monday evening, to urge people to wear masks and follow other Covid-appropriate behaviour. Besides, Chouhan requested social workers and religious leaders to run public awareness campaigns to check the spread of the virus.

Meanwhile, Maharashtra on Sunday imposed a weekend curfew in the state, which will remain effective from Friday 8 pm to Monday 7 am, as the state continued to record the highest number of daily cases. It announced restrictions during the week too. On Sunday, India reported a total of 93,249 new coronavirus cases in the highest single-day rise since mid-September.