Pramod Sawant. (File Photo: IANS). Image Source: IANS News

Panaji, July 16 : Goa Governor Satya Pal Malik has expressed concern about the negative and incorrect coverage of the state government's handling of the COVID-19 pandemic in the mainstream and social media, Chief Minister Pramod Sawant said on Thursday.

Sawant was speaking to reporters after a review meeting chaired by the Governor at the Raj Bhavan, which was attended by Sawant, Health Minister Vishwajit Rane, Chief Secretary Parimal Rai and Health Secretary Nila Mohanan.

"There is wrong information being circulated on the social media, so we gave him the right picture. He (Malik) praised the ongoing efforts made by us and said that social media, electronic media and print media is giving the wrong picture," Sawant said.

"The Governor said that the media should also focus on the positives and said that he does not know why he was being given the wrong picture," Sawant added.

The meeting with the Governor comes a day after the Chief Minister announced a two-tiered curfew in the state. While a complete lockdown (barring essential and medical services) has been ordered in Goa from Thursday night to Monday morning, a night curfew has been imposed until August 10 in view of the continued spike in the number of active COVID-19 cases in the state, which have crossed 1,000.

The opposition has attacked Sawant saying that the partial lockdown was a sign of "defective administration", with state Congress president Girish Chodankar claiming that the lockdown announcement on Wednesday was made with an eye on the review meeting with the Governor the following day.

"This is a political lockdown or a survival lockdown announced in desperation by the Chief Minister ahead of his review meeting with the Governor," Chodankar has said.

Sawant, however, said that Governor Malik was appreciative of the state government's efforts to manage the COVID pandemic and blamed the opposition for giving the wrong picture through the media.

"The Health Secretary told the Governor that despite giving daily updates, wrong information is being circulated (in the media)," Sawant said.

When asked about the specific incorrect information which was being circulated in the media, Sawant said: "You ask him (Governor). His Excellency will tell you. The opposition makes incorrect claims and you all broadcast it."

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