As Covid-19 cases continued to spike amid fears of a peak in the next few weeks, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Friday announced an extension of the night curfew from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. to all cities, along with a slew of other measures to control the spread of the pandemic.
The night curfew will now be applicable to all cities, with an exemption for industries, he said, while announcing sector-based division of big cities, with a nodal officer to be appointed in each for contract tracing to assist the health teams.
Amarinder Singh also announced weekend ‘Stay at Home’ for the avoidance of unnecessary movement and socialising, other than essential services, in Ludhiana, Patiala and Jalandhar cities for the next fortnight, after which the situation will be reviewed.
In another major decision, it has been decided that every marriage hall, restaurant and office, where more than 10 people gather, will appoint one Covid monitor to ensure full compliance of masks, sanitisation and social distancing, said the Chief Minister, at his weekly Facebook Live #AskCaptain session.
He warned that teams will come and inspect these places, and violators will be penalised.
Further, all persons who have high social contacts will be tested within the coming week and corona patients, who have recovered, from Health, Police and other departments will be put on frontline duty, said the Chief Minister.
The directions came amid a continuing increase in Covid cases, with the last seven days reporting an average of 1,000 a day.
The maximum cases last week came from Ludhiana, Patiala, Jalandhar, Amritsar and Mohali.
The Chief Minister said the increasing mortality due to Covid can be checked if those infected go for early testing and report to hospitals for treatment within 72 hours.
Treatment should begin within this period if lives are to be saved, he said, adding that “koyi gal nahin, theek ho jawange” or “Mausam di gal hai” does not work.
“Don’t be a doctor yourself, leave it to the doctors to diagnose the problem and suggest the treatment,” he appealed.
“There should be no stigma attached to Covid. Don’t feel shy to get yourself tested, there is nothing in it … the world is getting itself tested,” the Chief Minister said, adding that with the addition of four new testing facilities, a total of 13,000 tests were being done a day now, and the capacity would touch 20,000 per day by the end of the month.