As COVID-19 cases and deaths escalate, Punjab extends curbs till April 10

U.K. strain emerging as the most prevalent in the State

As COVID-19 cases and deaths continue to escalate, with the U.K. strain emerging as the most prevalent, the Punjab government on Tuesday decided to extend the curbs till April 10.

Reviewing the situation, Chief Minister Amarinder Singh said all restrictions that were in place till March 31 will now remain in force till April 10, after which they would be reviewed again.

The Chief Minister also ordered the launch of a vaccination drive in prisons, in the wake of 40 women in Patiala’s Nabha open jail testing positive.

He asked Chief Secretary Vini Mahajan to issue directions for carrying out testing and vaccination in busy market areas and other crowded places.

All eligible government employees and other categories he wanted included in vaccine coverage (such as judges, teachers etc), should be facilitated in getting the vaccination if they are 45 years old or more, said the Chief Minister.

An official statement said it was reported at the meeting that the positive cases and deaths were rising rapidly in some of the districts, with projections presented by the Christian Medical College in Ludhiana showing steep rise in the number of cases and a peak around April 6. The number would decrease by mid or late May, 2021, as per the estimates, which suggest that Jalandhar, Ludhiana, Patiala, Sahibzada Ajit Singh Nagar, Hoshiarpur and Kapurthala were expected to contribute more cases and positivity was likely to be high in the population of 40 years or less.

Dr.K.K. Talwar, adviser, Health and Medical Education (Punjab), suggested that routine non-COVID treatment in some of the selected private hospitals may be deferred by 2-4 weeks, and more ambulances be made available to the district hospitals where there are no medical colleges.

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