Maharashtra government announces strict restrictions in state after surge in Covid-19 cases

The government of Maharashtra on Wednesday evening announced strict restrictions in the state due to a huge increase in cases of coronavirus disease (Covid-19). The state government has also issued standard operating procedures (SOPs) for curbs.

The restrictions will take effect from 8 p.m. Thursday and will be in effect until 7 a.m. on May 1, by order of the state government.

“The state government is convinced that the state of Maharashtra is threatened with the spread of the Covid-19 virus, and therefore it is imperative to take certain emergency measures to prevent and contain the spread of the virus,” said the government of Maharashtra.

State government SOPs indicate that no travel will be permitted by public or private transport except for essential services, medical reasons, or immunization.

The number of wedding guests has been capped at 25 and the function should not last more than two hours, according to the government decree. Families who find themselves flouting the order will be fined 50,000 and the “misused” location will be closed until the enactment of Covid-19 because a disaster remains in effect.

The government and private bureaus were asked to allow only 15% of the staff. The SOPs also state that only private offices that provide essential services or fall into exempt categories can operate.

It comes on a day when Maharashtra recorded 568 deaths from Covid-19 – its highest since the start of the pandemic – and 67,468 new cases. According to the bulletin of the Maharashtra government health department, the statewide death toll reached 40,27,827 and the death toll to 61,911.

The highest daily count in the state to date – 68,631 – was reported on April 18.

Of the 568 deaths, 303 have occurred in the past 48 hours, the health department said.

Maharashtra ministers confirmed earlier on Wednesday that Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray would announce a strict lockdown. On Tuesday, the issue of a stricter lockdown was discussed at a cabinet meeting where the majority were in favor of a long lockdown in the state, instead of the current restrictions which they say have failed. been able to contain the spread of Covid-19 in the country. State.

“There is no alternative but to go for a strict lockdown,” Maharashtra Minister of Health Rajesh Tope said after Tuesday’s meeting.

Maharashtra has already been subject to restrictions such as nighttime curfews and district closures due to the growing number of Covid-19 cases, which have seen a sharp increase since February. Last week, Article 144, which prohibits the gathering of more than four people, was also imposed.

The deteriorating Covid-19 situation has raised concerns in Maharashtra. The state health department predicted that there would be a shortage of beds in almost all districts by May 2.