Friday, August 5 2022
The Kerala government on Monday ordered New Year celebrations not to continue past 10 p.m. on December 31 and similar restrictions to be in place on the night of December 30 to January 2, possibly in a bid to prevent any surge in cases of COVID-19 due to the festivities. The decision to impose nighttime restrictions – from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. – from December 30 to January 2 was taken at a COVID review meeting chaired by Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Monday, said a statement from the state government.

During the meeting, it was decided that New Year celebrations would not be allowed after 10 p.m. on December 31 and that the number of seats in bars, clubs, hotels, restaurants and restaurants would remain at 50%, according to the communicated.

It was also decided at the meeting that District Collectors would deploy Sector Magistrates with adequate police support to areas such as beaches, malls and public parks where large crowds are likely to gather for the New Year celebrations, he said.

In addition, areas where COVID-19 is spreading should be monitored for cluster formations, considered as containment areas and restrictions should be tightened there, the chief minister said at the meeting.

Kerala recorded 1,636 new cases of COVID-19 on Monday, bringing the tally of cases to 52.24,929 till date.

Instructions have been given by the Chief Minister to the Ministry of Health to take action to vaccinate deserving people with boosters from January 3 and to distribute Ayurvedic or homeopathic medicines to the public free of charge which would help boost their immunity, the press release said.

Vijayan also ordered measures against the Omicron variant to be intensified given its number reaching 57 in the state.

Since the new variant spreads three to five times faster than the Delta version of COVID-19, Omicron was likely to increase the number of coronavirus cases leading to a third wave, he said and added that measures were taken to deal with it.

Highlighting the measures taken by the government to deal with a third wave, the CM in the statement said that more and more drugs, beds and syringes were purchased and that district collectors were responsible for ensuring that all oxygen-producing hospitals increase their oxygen production and storage in view of the possibility of an increase in the number of COVID-19 victims by the end of January 2022.

District collectors have also been instructed to implement more genetic sequencing tests in Thiruvananthapuram and Ernakulam districts where the number of Omicron patients is high, according to the statement.


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