Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh today ordered a fresh set of restrictions in the middle of rising cases of coronavirus in the state. He reviewed the Covid-19 situation with health experts and senior officers on Tuesday.
The Punjab government limited the number of people gathering indoors to 100 and those gathering outdoors to 200 which will be implemented from 1 March. It ordered strict enforcement of wearing face masks and following social distancing rules. Additionally, the testing for Covid-19 will be ramped up to 30,000 a day.
However, the Punjab government will make the decision on cinema halls’ occupancy after 1 March. He also authorised the deputy commissioners of the state to impose night curfews in hot spots if necessary. Furthermore, Chief Minister Singh has ordered Covid-19 monitors in marriage palaces and restaurants.
Ludhiana, SBS Nagar, SAS Nagar, Hoshiarpur, Amritsar, Bathinda have witnessed a surge in Covid-19 cases, principal secretary (health) of Punjab, said. The positivity rate has gone up to 1.8-1.9% from 1%, he said.
“Due to lack of compliance, average positivity rate of SBS Nagar, Ludhiana, Bathinda is more than state average,” the secretary said.
Further, Punjab Health Minister Balbir Singh Sidhu on Sunday warned healthcare workers who do not get the COVID-19 vaccine shot of not allowing them quarantine leave if they get infected at a later stage. He further said they will have to bear the cost of their treatment.
“The healthcare workers who do not get vaccinated to boost their immunity for COVID-19 despite being given repeated opportunities and in case they get the infection at a later stage, they will have to bear the cost of their treatment and they will not be allowed to avail quarantine/isolation leave,” Sidhu said in an official statement.
Punjab yesterday registered 389 new cases, taking the infection count to 1,78,847, a medical bulletin said. There are 3,167 active COVID-19 cases in the state currently, it said.
Of the new cases, 54 were reported from Jalandhar, 49 from Mohali and 38 from Hoshiarpur.
A total of 225 coronavirus patients were discharged after recovering from the infection, taking the overall recoveries to 1,69,911 as per the bulletin. Ten critical patients are on ventilator support while 77 are on oxygen support, it said, adding that 48,60,435 samples have been collected for testing so far in the state.