Amid COVID-19 surge, fresh restrictions in Pune, Chhattisgarh, Punjab
As cases of coronavirus continue to rise at an alarming rate in India, the authorities in several cities and states that are witnessing the surge have come up with fresh restrictions in an attempt to contain the spread of the deadly virus. They include Pune in Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, and Punjab, among others. Here are more details on this.
12-hour night curfew imposed in Pune
The authorities in Pune today ordered a 12-hour night curfew from 6 pm to 6 am starting tomorrow for a period of at least one week. All religious places, hotels, bars, shopping malls, and movie theaters will stay closed. Only home deliveries of food and other essential services will be allowed. The situation will be reviewed next Friday, said Pune Divisional Commissioner Saurabh Rao.
Restrictions imposed in Mumbai as well
In neighboring Mumbai too, the authorities have imposed various measures, including conducting random COVID-19 tests on people in public spaces like malls and bus stations. "We have been appealing to people since last March but they are showing carelessness," the city's Mayor Kishori Pednekar said.
22 of 27 districts in Chhattisgarh impose night curfews
In Chhattisgarh, 22 out of the total 27 districts, including capital Raipur, have imposed night curfews. All temporary as well as permanent shops will be allowed to operate between 6 am and 9 pm while dhabas, restaurants, and hotels can operate indoor dining facilities between 8 am and 10 pm. However, essential services like medicine stores have been exempted from these restrictions.
Punjab extends restrictions until April 10
The Punjab government had earlier this week ordered the extension of its existing COVID-19-related restrictions until April 10, while they were originally supposed to end on March 31. In the northern state, all educational institutes, except medical and nursing colleges, have been ordered to stay shut until April 10. Functions like weddings and funerals have been allowed with certain restrictions.
Delhi introduces random testing at airport
Meanwhile, passengers at the Delhi Airport - coming from states that are witnessing a surge in COVID-19 cases - will be randomly tested for COVID-19. Those who test positive will be quarantined for a period of 10 days, the government had said earlier this week. Random coronavirus tests will also reportedly be done at Delhi's railway stations and bus stations at a later stage.
Gujarat extends night curfew in four cities by 15 days
Separately, the government in Gujarat has extended the night curfew restrictions in four major cities by another two weeks. Hence, the night curfew in Ahmedabad, Surat, Vadodara, and Rajkot will continue until April 15.
India reported over 81K COVID-19 cases yesterday
India has been witnessing a worrying spike in COVID-19 cases amid growing concerns over mutated strains of the virus and increasing laxity among people in adhering to coronavirus-related protocols. In fact, the country on Thursday reported 81,466 COVID-19 cases - the highest jump in a day since December 6. The current wave of the coronavirus is expected to reach its peak later this month.