Jai Ram blames rush from Punjab, Haryana for spike in cases, announces fresh curbs
As Covid-19 cases surge in Himachal Pradesh, the state government on Wednesday prohibited disc jockeys (DJs) at weddings, while Una administration restricted the numbers of guests at weddings to 20.
The government has received 8,250 requests for organising marriage ceremonies from across the districts for May.
“It was observed that infections multiplied rapidly during the wedding season, so a ban on DJs will ensure that people don’t get opportunity to dance and come in close contact with each other during functions,” said chief minister (CM) Jai Ram Thakur while reviewing the Covid situation in Shimla.
“During the first wave too, we had noticed that when we imposed curbs on marriages and other such functions, the number of cases dropped,” he added.
Jai Ram said there was a rush of Covid patients from Punjab and Haryana as they assumed that Himachal had sufficient bed capacity and oxygen.
“In four border districts of Kangra, Sirmaur, Una and Solan, we have imposed night curfew as positivity rate there has climbed up to 12%, which is quite high and people coming from other states are contributing into it ,” he added.
“People coming from outside will have to undergo 14-day home quarantine or produce RT-PCR negative report. We are not stopping anyone from entering Himachal, but people will have to register themselves on Covid portal,” the CM said.
Health minister Rajiv Saizal and urban development minister Suresh Bhardwaj also attended the meeting wherein ways to increase bed capacity in Shimla were also discussed. A floor of multi-storey car parking in Shimla’s Tuttikandi is one of the sites identified for the purpose. The government has also planned to add at least 300 beds at the new OPD of Indira Gandhi Medical College and Hospital in a phased manner, besides 50 beds at the ayurvedic hospital in Chhota Shimla and as many beds at Junga civil hospital.
“At least 200 beds will be brought in at Rohru and Rampur medical centres along with Chopal and Theog,” the CM said. “We have also urged the army to open its hospital for the treatment of civilians,” he added.
“Delhi chief minister had demanded oxygen from us, but we will not be able to oblige as under disaster management provisions, the clearance has to be obtained from the ministry of home affairs,” Jai Ram said.
State targets 30 lakh youths for vaccination
Health minister Saizal on Wednesday said that the state government was developing a mechanism for the vaccination of people between 18 to 44 years. He said over 20 lakh people will be registered in phased manner and the state has demanded 60 lakh doses of vaccine from the central government.