COVID SURGE: WB Tops Covid Positivity; Delhi Goes For Weekend Lockdown, Punjab Night Curfew

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By: Neelabh Bafna | Bhaskar Mukherjee
Updated: 04 January, 2022 4:52 pm IST
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NEW DELHI: The country registered over 37,000 new covid infections on Jan 3, significantly higher than it was recording for November and most of December when new daily cases remained under the 10,000 threshold. Metropolitan cities like Delhi, Mumbai, and Kolkata make up most of this surge at the moment. With West Bengal topping the test positivity rate by averaging at 18.83% and daily cases crossing the 6,000 mark. In the wake of the massive uptick in Covid-19 numbers, all medical colleges, 37 urban primary health care centers, 16 schools in Kolkata will administer Covid-19 vaccines to 15-18-year-olds from Monday. The Kolkata Municipal Corporation has identified 11 areas in the city as ‘micro-containment zones’.

With the rise in COVID-19 cases in the National Capital Region of Delhi, the Delhi govt has decided to impose a weekend curfew to curb the spread of novel Coronavirus disease. Fresh guidelines are in place; All govt employees to work from home, Private offices in Delhi to remain open with 50 percent capacity. Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia. urged the people to not panic amid the Covid-19 outbreak and suggested that the data available so far indicates that Omicron spreads very rapidly but is less severe. He, however, cautioned people about being complacent and asked them to wear masks and avoid crowding at public places.

With India logging 37,379 new cases, most since September 9; Punjab has also imposed a night curfew from 10 pm to 5 am. Educational institutes have been shut in Punjab while entertainment facilities, including cinema halls, bars, multiplexes, malls, restaurants, spas, museums, and zoos, will be allowed to operate at 50 percent capacity.

The AC buses will also run at 50 per cent capacity. Sports complexes, swimming pools and gyms would remain closed, the only exception being those where sportspersons are being trained for participation in national or international events. No spectators or visitors, however, are to be allowed.

Only fully vaccinated staff will be allowed inside government as well as private offices, working spaces, factories, industries, etc.

In Maharashtra, in case of marriages or any other social, political or religious event, the maximum number of attendees have been restricted to 50 persons. Night curfew from 9 pm to 6 am has already been imposed. Imposition of section 144 in any other part of the state which are tourist spots that attract a large crowd of people such as beaches, open grounds, etc.

Meanwhile, several leaders on Tuesday said that they have tested positive for Covid-19. BJP MP Manoj Tiwari took to Twitter to state that he had tested positive and was isolating. Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, who had attended an election rally in Dehradun on Monday, also said that he has been tested positive and urged people with who he came in contact with, to isolate themselves. Union Minister Mahendra Nath Pandey, Maharashtra Minister Eknath Shinde, and TMC’s Babul Supriyo, too, said they are Covid-positive.

On a separate note, security in Punjab is being reviewed by the Director General of Police (DGP) Siddharth Chattopadhyaya, ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s rally in Ferozepur on Wednesday.

The DGP said that the police teams will ensure all covid protocols — social distancing, using of mask, vaccination certificates of the visitors — are maintained at the rally sthal.

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