Health Ministry wants States to keep watch on new year celebrations

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The Union Health Ministry on Wednesday urged all the States to impose local restrictions for the next three days, if required, to ensure that there are no super spreader events during the celebrations for ringing in the new year.

“You may appreciate that in the wake of New Year and various celebratory events associated with it, as well as the on-going winter season, strict vigil is required to be maintained to curb all potential ‘super spreader’ events and places where crowds may gather,” said Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan said in a letter written to the Chief Secretaries of States and Administrators of Union Territories.

Also read: New Year 2021: Maharashtra declares no ‘Covid curfew’ on December 31 and January 1

Drawing their attention to a recent Home Ministry letter, he said that State authorities may impose local restrictions, such as night curfew, with a view to contain the spread of Covid-19. However, there cannot be restrictions on inter-State and intra-State movement of persons and goods, the Health Secretary said.

The letter asked the authorities to assess the local situation and consider imposing appropriate restrictions on December 30 and 31 as well as on January 1.

Also read: TN govt bans celebrations on New Year eve and January 1

These measures are necessary keeping in view the fresh surge in Covid-19 cases in Europe and the US and steady decline in cases in the country for the last three and a half months, he said.

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