‘No Mask, No Service’: Himachal Govt Gears Up To Check Covid Surge
Amid a Covid surge, Urban Development and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Suresh Bhardwaj on Friday said, “No Mask, No Service” is going to be the new guiding principle for Himachal Pradesh.
Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur said that there is a need to act tough against those not adhering to social distancing norms and have even discarded masks.
“We propose to start an aggressive campaign and impose penalties on those not wearing the masks. ‘No Mask, No Service’ will be enforced in the state very strictly“, he said.
Alarmed over the fresh spike, the Himachal Pradesh government decided to beef up regulatory measures to curb the spread of Covid-19 that has severely affected at least four districts in the state.
Himachal government is likely to impose new restrictions on upcoming festivals and fairs in addition to social gatherings and cultural shows during the night hours.
“Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur will unfold all new measures when he holds a video conference with all DCs, SPs, and senior government officials”, said Bhardwaj.
“The police have been told to enforce the wearing of masks and other restrictions strictly. Police have also been instructed to impose fines and other penalties required under the law”, Bhardwaj added.
The state government has decided to cut down the allowed strength at all social and religious gatherings by 50 percent.
According to government sources, not more than 200 people will be allowed to gather. Night parties and cultural shows, wrestling events that are being held in certain districts of the state will also be stopped.
The government sources said the cabinet was not in favour of a lockdown at this stage and favoured only micro containment zones in the affected areas.
The state reported 170 fresh cases of Covid-19 and three deaths on Friday. More than 10 persons have died in Himachal in the past eight days.
“The fresh spike has two or three things of grave concern. The fatality rate which had been brought down to zero is again up and the daily infection rate is also high. The active coronavirus cases on Friday has also increased to 1124 against 218 on February 23”, said Bhardwaj.
As many as 1003 deaths due to coronavirus have been reported in Himachal Pradesh since March 20, 2020.