UP: Wearing masks now mandatory in Lucknow, 6 NCR districts
The Uttar Pradesh government on Monday issued orders making the wearing of face masks compulsory in public places in the state capital Lucknow and six National Capital Region (NCR) districts. This came in response to the surging COVID-19 cases in UP and its neighboring states, too. Earlier in April, the government relaxed the requirement to wear a mask, owing to the improving COVID-19 situation.
- The development comes after some NCR districts in UP reported a rise in cases in the last 24 hours.
- CM Yogi Adityanath has ordered officials to closely monitor the situation.
- Of the 115 new cases reported by UP on Monday, 65 were registered in Gautam Buddh Nagar, 20 in Ghaziabad, and 10 in Lucknow. The state had a total of 695 active COVID-19 cases.
The Adityanath-led UP government has issued the orders mandating face masks for districts that are witnessing a rise in fresh COVID-19 cases and the daily positivity rate. The government stated, "In view of an increase in COVID-19 cases, wearing face masks in public places is mandatory in Gautam Budh Nagar, Ghaziabad, Hapur, Meerut, Bulandshahr, Baghpat, and Lucknow."
According to the UP government, only the Omicron variant of coronavirus was discovered in the genome sequencing of COVID-19 patients' samples. Experts predicted this highly infectious variant could lead to a significant surge in cases in the coming weeks though hospitalizations may not witness a rise. Therefore, people must strictly follow COVID-19-appropriate behavior in public places and on public transportation, the government's advisory stated.
According to a PTI report, Uttar Pradesh's COVID-19 vaccination campaign is progressing satisfactorily, but there is an exigency to ramp up the vaccination of children. The report also said that over 86% of the state's adult population is fully vaccinated with both shots of the COVID-19 vaccine. Also, more than 94% of adolescents aged 15-17 years in the state have received their first shot.
The recent surge in daily COVID-19 cases and positivity rate in Delhi is also a cause for concern for neighboring Uttar Pradesh. On Sunday, Delhi registered 517 new COVID-19 cases, while the positivity rate stood at 4.21%. However, no deaths were reported. A recent survey claimed the number of Delhi-NCR residents reporting cases in their social network jumped 500% in the last 15 days.
India on Monday reported over 2,000 new COVID-19 cases, nearly double the number of cases reported on the previous day. The country's active caseload stood at 11,542, which accounts for 0.03% of the total cases so far. In the past 24 hours, a total of 2,183 new cases and 214 fatalities were reported. Meanwhile, India's COVID-19 recovery rate stood at 98.76%.