As India records 126,260 new Covid-19 cases, curbs in more states
8 April 2021: More regions on Wednesday were forced to reintroduce lockdown-like curbs on social movement due to rising cases of the coronavirus disease with second wave of infections continuing on a relentless march as India, for the second day in a row, set a new record for daily surge in infections with 126,260 new infections.
On Tuesday, a complete lockdown was announced in Chhattisgarh’s capital Raipur from April 9 till April 19, while the Punjab government extended its state-wide night curfew till April 30, even as Bengaluru ordered a ban on use of swimming pools and gyms in the city.
These are the latest in a string of regions across the country that have again started enforcing a wide range of curbs ranging from night curfews to limits on public assembly as they struggled to reel under the second wave of Covid-19 cases.
Pushed by Wednesday’s new infections, the seven-day average of daily cases touched 100,761 new cases a day on average, which means that India’s second wave has now surpassed the peak of the first wave, which peaked at 93,617 new cases for the week ending September 16, 2020. The seven-day average of daily cases is taken as a representation for the Covid-19 case curve of a region.
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On Tuesday, Delhi had clamped a night curfew on movement and assembly of people between 10pm and 5am every day until April 30, joining the growing list of major cities such as Mumbai, Chandigarh that have been forced to reintroduce curbs on social movement. In Maharashtra, which is contributing roughly half of all cases in India, authorities have imposed a night and weekend curfew, ordered non-essentials businesses to shut down, and asked most offices to switch to remote working.
Night curfews are among the most common non-pharmaceutical interventions used by governments to check the pandemic in Punjab, Rajasthan, Gujarat and Maharashtra.
In Chhattisgarh, which is currently India’s second-largest Covid hot spot after Maharashtra, the administration in Raipur district imposed an 11-day complete lockdown. In an order, Raipur collector, said entire district, including the capital, has been declared as containment zone and restricted several activities from 6 pm on April 9 till 6am on April 19. Raipur had reported 76,427 Covid-19 cases, including 1,001 deaths till Tuesday. In the last six days, the district witnessed 10,755 cases and 93 deaths.
‘During the lockdown period, the border of the district will be completely sealed and shops, including liquor, and commercial establishments will remain closed except medical stores,’ the order stated adding that essential services such as hospitals, ATMs etc have been kept out of purview of restriction.
On Wednesday, the state recorded 10,310 cases, the highest single-day spike since the outbreak of infection in March last year.
In Punjab, chief minister Amarinder Singh on Wednesday ordered a ban on political gatherings and extended a night curfew to the whole state while capping numbers at indoor funerals and weddings to 50 guests and 100 for outdoors. He said those violating the ban on political gatherings, including leaders, will be booked under the Disaster Management Act and the Epidemics Diseases Act.
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These restrictions, coupled with the ones imposed earlier, which include closure of schools and educational institutions, shall remain effective till April 30. However, there was some respite for shop owners in malls, as the chief minister allowed entry of 10 people per shop at any given time, as against the earlier order of not allowing more than 100 people in the entire mall at a given time, according to the order. On Wednesday, Punjab recorded 2,963 new cases.
In light of the rising number of cases in Karnataka, the Bengaluru Police has ordered a ban on the use of swimming pools and gyms within the city limits and imposed Section 144 of the CrPC in the city, banning gatherings at party halls, apartment and residential complexes. Of the 6,976 new cases reported in Karnataka on Wednesday, 4,991 were from Bengaluru Urban.