New red zone plan on drawing board, to be out this week: Delhi govt
A revised policy for containment zones will be rolled out in the national capital later this week, senior government officials said on Wednesday. A Delhi government spokesperson said the guidelines for containment zones are undergoing revision at the moment by the high-level committee headed by Nitin Aayog member Dr VK Paul.
In a meeting of the Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA), the L-G had directed to revise the policy for containment zones. “Though no clear deadline was fixed in the meeting of September 18, the health department was to submit the new strategy in a week. However, now the same is being reviewed and modified by the high-level committee, which is why the delay,” an official privy to the developments said.
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Accordingly, Delhi’s directorate general of health services on Tuesday asked all district administrations to continue with the existing containment strategy.
“As per approval of the competent authority, realignment of containment zones may be deferred till the end of this week, so that it may be done according to the revised guidelines to be finalised by the high-level committee,” read the communication of the state’s DGHS Nutan Mundeja to all districts.
This is the second time that Delhi’s containment zone strategy will be re-drafted. Earlier, the containment zone policy was revised on June 26, in adherence to recommendations by Union home minister Amit Shah.
District officials explained that at present, an area is declared a containment zone if three or more people test positive for Covid-19.
The number of containment zones in Delhi crossed the 2,000-mark on September 24. The city saw the total number of containment zones increase by over a thousand in just 18 days as daily Covid-19 cases continued to be above the 3,000-mark.
As on Tuesday, Delhi had 2,505 containment zones - which are defined as sealed areas where free movement of individuals, traffic and economic activities are prohibited. All residents in containment zones are put under intensive surveillance and are periodically screened for the virus and the area is sanitised regularly. Essential goods are delivered at the doorstep by government officials for a period of at least 14 days, as per the government rules.
As per Tuesday’s data, most of the hot spots were concentrated in the western part of the city, with the highest number in the southwest district, which had 448 containment zones (17.88%), followed by the south (273), and northwest (257) districts.