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In view of the rapid rise in COVID-19 cases, the Assam government has extended lockdown in the Kamrup (Metro) district for one more week after the 14-day shutdown ends on Sunday, officials said here on Saturday.

A government official said that Chief Secretary Kumar Sanjay Krishna issued an order on Saturday night extending the lockdown in Guwahati till July 19.

The four-page lockdown order said that there is continuing large-scale spread of COVID-19 occurring in almost the entire district of Kamrup Metropolitan which may be a major threat to public health, hygiene and safety of the general population.

Krishna, who is the Chairman of the executive committee of the Assam Disaster Management, in his order said that movement of individuals and public transport shall remain strictly prohibited in the district.

“All government and private offices would remain closed. All business and commercial establishments, shops and trade activities shall remain shut except all standalone grocery and stationery shops, which would be allowed to operate in between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m,” the order said.

The Chief Secretary said that due to the extensive testing, isolation of people and other restrictive measures, community spread of the coronavirus has been contained to some extent and is showing encouraging downward trend which necessitates the further extension of prohibitory measures in order to contain the spread of the pandemic and avoid large scale spread of incidence of COVID-19.

With a population of 11.20 lakh, northeast India’s main commercial hub Guwahati is the headquarters of the Kamrup (Metro) district.

Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma while talking to the media on Saturday said that with the recovery of 10,426 patients out of the total of 15,536 patients, the recovery rate in Assam is around 67.11 per cent against the national average of 62.78 per cent.

With 16 deaths in the past two days, the COVID-19 toll in Assam increased to 35.

According to the health officials, of the total of 15,536 COVID-19 positive cases, the Kamrup (Metro) district out of the state’s 33 districts, alone registered around 4,000 patients.

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