Night curfew imposed in Haryana amid surge in Covid-19 cases

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Chandigarh, April 12 (PTI): The Haryana government on Monday imposed night curfew in the state with immediate effect amid a surge in coronavirus cases.

“Night curfew between 9 pm and 5 am will be imposed from tonight and will remain in force till further orders,” home and health minister Anil Vij told PTI.

He said the decision has been taken in the wake of an increase in the number of Covid-19 cases in the state recently.

“The situation will be assessed after a few days after which a decision on continuation of night curfew will be taken,” Vij said.

However, there shall be no curbs on inter-state and intra-state movement of essential and non-essential goods. Emergency and municipal services, people tasked with law and services, police, military and paramilitary personnel have been exempted from the curfew, according to an order.

Vij said that additional chief secretaries of the home, health and urban local bodies departments have been instructed to ensure people wear masks and follow all other Covid-related guidelines.

On Monday, Haryana reported a record spike of 3,818 cases, the highest in nearly five months, according to a health department bulletin. In the past several days, there has been a daily surge in the number of cases in the state, with many districts including Gugaon, Karnal, Kurukshetra and Faridabad reporting big spikes.

The order issued by the Haryana State Disaster Management Authority said that the Centre and the Haryana government have issued various guidelines from time to time to prevent the spread of Covid-19.

However, there has been a recent surge in number of cases and therefore, it is imperative to put in place strict measures of isolation and social distancing to contain the spread, it said.

It was mentioned in the order that there has been a lot of non-essential movement of people and vehicles during the night.

“There shall be prohibition on movement of individuals for all non-essential activities between 9 pm to 5 am in Haryana. No person shall leave their homes or shall move on foot or by vehicle or travel or stand or roam around on any road or public places during the restricted hours,” according to the order.

However, services and movement of persons related to law and order, emergencies and municipal duties have been exempted from the curfew, it said.

Executive magistrates, police personnel, military, paramilitary personnel in uniform, health, electricity and fire personnel, media persons with accreditation, and the government machinery tasked with Covid-19 related duties will face no restrictions, the order said.

Also, those specially issued a restricted movement curfew pass by officers authorised on this behalf are exempted, it said, adding that there will be no curbs on inter-state and intra-state movement of essential and non-essential goods.

All vehicle and persons in bonafide transit (inter-state or intra-state) shall be allowed to pass, but only after verification of point of origin and destination, the order said.

Hospitals, chemist shops and ATMs will remain open round-the-clock.

Pregnant women and patients going to get medical services and passengers going to or returning from airport or railway stations will be exempted.

Those violating the orders will face action under the provisions of the Disaster Management Act, 2005.

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