Uttarakhand government announces night curfew amid Omicron threat
The announcement came days after neighbouring Uttar Pradesh announced night curfew to check the rising Covid-19 cases. Essential services like health, movement of vehicles carrying health personnel, ambulances, postal services have been exempted from the ambit of the curfew.
The Uttarakhand government on Monday announced night curfew across the state, in view of the threat posed by the new Omicron variant of coronavirus. The decision comes days after neighbouring Uttar Pradesh announced similar curbs to check the spread of the infection.
The night curfew will come into effect from tonight. It will remain in force from 11pm to 5am till further orders, said an order issued by chief secretary SS Sandhu.
However, essential services like health, movement of vehicles carrying health personnel, ambulances, postal services have been exempted from the ambit of the curfew.
Private vehicles too will have the permission to commute for emergencies during the curfew with strict adherence to Covid and safety protocols.
The Uttar Pradesh government reintroduced night curfew from Saturday after a review meeting chaired by chief minister Yogi Adityanath.
Adityanath also asked officials to publicise the “no mask, no shopping” message for traders and shopkeepers. “Police should enhance patrolling, make public address system more effective to publicise safety norms and protocols...mask-wearing must be made mandatory for movement on roads and in markets,” a statement from Uttar Pradesh government said.
The UP government also announced restrictions on social events like weddings and restricted them to 200 people, intensified police patrolling to ensure compliance with Covid-appropriate behaviour, and upgraded vigilance at airports, bus stations and railway terminals for passengers coming to the state.
The Omicron variant has been spreading fast in India. So far, the country has recorded more than 500 cases of the new coronavirus variant, which was detected in South Africa on November 24.
The Centre government, meanwhile, extended the enforcement of nationwide Covid-19 containment measures until January 31, 2022, amid concerns over Omicron.
Referring to the increased Omicron cases, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) issued an advisory to all the states and Union Territories (UTs), directing them to implement a "normative framework for taking evidence-based containment measures at district and local level and extended the Covid-19 containment measures till January 31 next year.