Omicron:Restrictions for Christmas,New Year celebrations in India
News Desk || shiningbd
States across India have begun imposing fresh curbs on large gatherings ahead of Christmas and New Year celebrations as the number of cases of Covid-19 Omicron variant continues to go up.
Authorities are also pressing mandatory isolation in hospitals for all Covid-19 positive persons, reports our New Delhi correspondent.
The re-imposition of curbs came a day after the Indian health minister cautioned about the faster spread of Omicron and noted its "initial signs of the surge."
The Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) has banned Christmas and New Year gatherings in the Indian capital but allowed restaurants and bars to continue to operate with up to 50 percent of the seating capacity. Wedding gatherings are permitted with a maximum of 200 people in attendance.
Orders were also issued to identify potential Covid-19 super-spreader areas ahead of Christmas and New Year and to tighten the enforcement machinery to ensure people follow social-distancing norms and wear masks.
Bengaluru will also see fresh restrictions on New Year 2022 celebrations. However, festivities in clubs and restaurants have been permitted with a 50 percent seating capacity.
According to the orders, full vaccination will also be mandatory for everyone at the places of celebrations.
The police in Mumbai, India's financial capital, said that in the wake of the Omicron concerns, prohibitory orders under Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) will be imposed in the city from December 16 to December 31 banning large gatherings and parties.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi is expected to chair a high-level meeting to review the latest Covid situation and the readiness of India's medical infrastructure, including the availability of oxygen, beds, medicines and ventilators.
India has so far reported 236 Omicron cases with Maharashtra and Delhi being the top two contributors, according to health ministry figures this morning. Of them, 104 have been recovered and discharged from hospitals.
The Daily Star