Coronavirus outbreak: Now, state shuts malls, museums, kisan mandis till March 31
STRINGENT MEASURES: Gatherings at wedding functions in marriage palaces to be restricted to 50 till further orders; religious institutions, deras advised to postpone congregationsUpdated: Mar 17, 2020, 22:55 IST
The Punjab government on Tuesday decided to close down all the shopping complexes, malls, museums and local weekly kisan mandis till March 31 to check the spread of coronavirus in the state.
A decision to this effect was taken by a group of ministers (GoM) to prohibit the public gatherings in view of the advisory received from the central government. The GoM, which met here under the chairmanship of local bodies minister Brahm Mohindra, also decided to issue advisory for all the religious institutions, dera heads to postpone their congregations till March 31, according to an official release.
The GoM also decided to restrict the gatherings at wedding functions organised at marriage palaces. Directions have been issued to the deputy commissioners to ensure that the gathering at any function in marriage palaces must not be beyond 50 persons.
Likewise, the DCs will also ensure that all the restaurants, hotels, dhabas and food courts in their respective areas are implementing handwash protocol and proper cleanliness of frequently touched surfaces, besides ensuring physical distancing of 1 meter between persons and tables, said the spokesperson.
Even as the shopping complexes, malls and cinemas would be closed till March 31, chemists and grocery shops in malls have been exempted. The GoM has allowed the rehriwalas to sell the vegetables in streets for the convenience of the public.
EXAMS TO BE POSTPONED
The school education department and administrative bodies of other private educational institutes have been directed to postpone the examinations. “In case, there is dire need of conducting the examinations, the particular institute and school would inform the district administration and ensure that one meter distance is maintained between two students,” reads the official statement.
The group of ministers also reviewed the present situation in the state and took stock of the availability of prescribed medicines and deployment of medical and paramedical staff at crucial junctures.
Besides Mohindra, the GoM comprises OP Soni (medical education & research), Tript Rajinder Singh Bajwa (rural development and panchayats), Razia Sultana (transport), Balbir Singh Sidhu (health and family welfare), Vijay Inder Singla (school education) and Bharat Bhushan Ashu (food and civil supplies).
Chief secretary Karan Avtar Singh, principal secretary (health and family welfare) Anurag Aggarwal and principal secretary (medical education and research) DK Tiwari were among those present in the meeting.