Amid surging cases, Chandigarh decides against night curfew for now
In contrast to the neighbouring states of Punjab and Himachal Pradesh, the UT administration has decided against imposing night curfew and changing shops’ timings in Chandigarh for the time being.
The call was taken at the Covid-19 review meeting, chaired by Punjab governor and UT administrator VP Singh Badnore, on Wednesday.
While a night curfew is in place in Punjab and some districts of Himachal Pradesh in the wake of the recent spike in Covid-19 cases, UT has only increased the penalty for not wearing masks from Rs 500 to Rs 1,000.
“Night curfew has limited impact on containing the spread of infection. Besides, the Covid-19 situation is under control in Chandigarh,” said UT adviser Manoj Parida.
The administration’s decision also comes in the wake of the November-30 meeting with the cabinet secretary. In the meeting, the Centre had advised against imposing fresh lockdown restrictions and sought focus on enforcing social distancing norms and ensuring wearing of masks.
Following Wednesday’s meeting, Badnore appealed to patients, who were in home isolation to approach hospitals for medical treatment, without waiting for their condition to become critical.
NO BEND IN CURVE
Notably, Chandigarh saw a 20% surge in Covid cases in November as compared to October, though the fatalities dropped by 20% in the same period.
With 2,991 cases, November accounted for around 17% of total infections reported in the city so far, while October had 2,480 cases, while the deaths decreased from 64 to 51 between the two months.
In Mohali, the cases jumped by 58% between October and November, from 1990 in October to 3,140 in November, which accounts for 20% of the total cases reported so far. Similarly, the number of deaths, too, increased from 29 in October to 41 in November.
Here, the curfew from 10pm to 5am was imposed from December 1 for two weeks. The movement of individuals for all non-essential activities is prohibited during these hours.
Besides, the fine for not wearing masks has also been increased from Rs 500 to Rs 1,000. Hotels, other hospitality units, restaurants and marriage palaces have to shut down by 9.30 pm.
However, essential activities, including operation of multiple shifts in industry and offices, movement of persons and goods on national and state highways, and unloading of cargo and travel of persons to their destinations after disembarking from buses, trains and aeroplanes, are permitted.
While no fresh restrictions have been imposed in Panchkula, the cases here also saw a 34% spike between October and November. While there were 1,158 cases in October, these rose to 1,547 in November, which is 17.7% of the total caseload till date.
As far as deaths are concerned, November witnessed a dip in fatalities with Panchkula logging 14 deaths, while 27 deaths were reported in October.