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New Years Ahead, MHA Extends “Strict Vigil” Guidelines Through Jan 31 | India News

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NEW DELHI: Existing Home Office guidelines for surveillance, containment, and precaution against Covid-19 were extended on Monday through January 31, 2021, even as the ministry asked Union states and Territories to maintain a “strict vigilance” to avoid a new increase in cases as a result of the meetings planned during the New Year celebrations.
The ministry, although it extended the validity of the rules last announced on November 25, pointed out that although the general situation in the country seemed optimistic with a constant decrease in active cases in the last 2-3 months, it was necessary to maintain the caution and strict vigilance. in view of the increase in cases globally and the emergence of a new variant of the virus in the UK.
“Close surveillance is also necessary to prevent a further increase in cases in the wake of the upcoming New Year’s celebrations and the ongoing winter season that are favorable for the spread of the virus,” Interior Secretary Ajay Bhalla said in a letter to the principal secretaries. / administrators of all states / UT.
Bhalla said the states and UT will remain free to impose local restrictions such as a night curfew, depending on their own assessment of the situation.
It is important to note that, with the government having begun preparations for the launch of the Covid-19 vaccine, the Secretary of the Interior asked the states / UT to instruct the authorities concerned to offer active support to the ministry of health and family welfare in identification, preparation of the beneficiary database, delivery of vaccines, storage, security, shipment and vaccination process.
The National Group of Experts on the Administration of Vaccines for Covid-19 (NEGVAC) has recommended giving priority to the vaccine to healthcare workers, front-line workers, people 50 years and older and those under 50 years with comorbidities.
The current set of guidelines allows all activities outside of containment zones with some curbs; such as international air travel permitted by MHA; movie theaters and theaters to operate at 50% capacity; swimming pools only for the training of athletes; exhibitions for business-to-business purposes only; and social, religious, sports and cultural gatherings up to a maximum of 50% of the room’s capacity, with a ceiling of 200 people, in closed spaces and keeping the size of the land in sight, in open spaces.

Times of India

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