Guwahati(Assam), June 26 : State Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma announced a “total lockdown” in Guwahati from Monday for the next two weeks after a sharp surge in new coronavirus patients was recorded in the last ten days.
Everything will be closed totally next week and only medical services will be operational in the city, Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said : “Please finish your shopping by Sunday.”
“A total lockdown will be observed in Kamrup (Metro) district for two weeks from Sunday midnight. For the first seven days, medicial services will be open.
Everything else will be shut,” minister said while speaking at a press conference today during a virtual press conference this afternoon.
A 12-hour night-curfew – between 7 pm and 7 am – will be observed across the state from Friday, he informed.
The state will also enforce a “complete lockdown” in other towns and municipal areas on weekends from Saturday every week; only emergency services will be allowed.
In the capital city , banks will be allowed to open for a limited time . Air or rail tickets can be used as passes by travelers and the situation will be reviewed next Friday to consider relaxations if at all the situation improves .
Guwahati city saw around 800 new infections since June 15, which prompted the state to take the decision. Of 276 fresh infections reported in the state on Thursday, 133 were from Guwahati.
The minister said that now the govt is left with with no choice but to impose a complete lockdown, and this time it will be very strict as no grocery shops will be allowed to open, supply of vegetables and other essentials will not be permitted for the first seven days as this is the only solution to break the chain of transmission, indicating that this may be the strictest lockdown the city has seen since the beginning of the pandemic.
India announced one of the world’s strictest lockdowns to tackle the outbreak in March. However, shops selling groceries or other stores selling essentials were not shut during the last three months. Restrictions were eased earlier this month as the government revealed the plan to “unlock” the nation to revive the economy, badly hit by the pandemic.
With over 6,300 coronavirus cases, Assam is one of the worst-affected states in the northeast. 10 deaths linked to the highly contagious illness have been recorded so far, according to the Union Health Ministry.
Around 4,000 patients in Assam have recovered.
India’s corornavirus tally soared to 4.9 lakh cases this morning after more than 17,000 new infections were recorded in the last 24 hours.
(With agency inputs )