Coronavirus: Kerala orders fresh curbs; cinema halls, bars, malls shut
As Kerala faces a surge in COVID-19 cases, the state government on Monday ordered fresh curbs to limit the viral spread. Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan announced the fresh restrictions after an all-party meeting earlier in the day. The decision comes a day after the state saw a record rise in the number of infections. Here are more details.
Restrictions come into effect tomorrow
Under the new restrictions, that come into effect from Tuesday, movie theaters, shopping malls, gymnasiums, clubs, sports complexes, swimming pools, amusement parks, bars, and foreign liquor shops will be shut. Shops and restaurants will have to be closed by 7:30 pm. Takeaway/home delivery services can continue till 9 pm. All social, political, cultural, and religious functions/gatherings are prohibited until further orders.
Weekend mini-lockdown to continue
The weekend mini-lockdown will continue and only essential services will be allowed on these days. Saturdays will be a holiday for government/quasi-governmental organizations. Up to 20 people can attend funerals. Up to 50 people can attend weddings. Wedding ceremonies should be registered on the COVID-19 Jagratha portal. 50% government office staff is allowed on rotation. Private companies should keep the staff to a minimum.
Avoid celebrations on vote counting day
Celebrations should be avoided on May 2, the day votes for the recent Assembly elections will be counted. Only officers on duty, counting agents, and journalists can visit counting centers. Entry to the counting center will be limited to those who have been fully vaccinated or those who have RT-PCR negative certificate obtained within 72 hours. This rule also applies to officials.
Kerala reports nearly 22K new cases
A day after reporting a record single-day spike of 28,469 infections, Kerala added 21,890 new cases. However, the dip in infections can be attributed to a decline in the number of tests, as the daily positivity rate rose slightly to 22.7%. The cumulative number of cases has reached 14,27,545, which includes 2,32,812 active cases. 28 more fatalities pushed the death toll to 5,138.