Updated: March 28, 2021 12:19:50 am
Beginning April 1, a negative RT-PCR test certificate will be mandatory for those travelling to Gujarat from other states, the state government said Saturday. The announcement comes as Covid-19 cases in the state hit a new high with 2,276 cases — its highest single-day rise in infections since the beginning of the pandemic last year.
The order, issued by deputy secretary of state health department Vanrajsinh Padhariya, states that in light of several states reporting a rise in Covid-19 cases, the government has decided that anyone entering Gujarat from any other states will require to carry a RT-PCR negative report not older than 72 hours. “The mandatory requirement shall be effective starting April 1 until further orders,” the order states.
On March 23, the state government had issued a similar notification for people entering Gujarat from Maharashtra — the neighbouring state witnessed a sharp spike in cases.
Ahmedabad city, which reported 601 fresh infections and one fatality, added further restrictions in light of the upcoming Holi festival. On Saturday, the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) said all clubs, party plots and swimming pools will remain closed on March 28 and 29. The civic body also declared that housing societies will refrain from celebrating the festival with colours and water in a crowd, while bigger temples and havelis, too, have to refrain from such celebrations.
Holi, the civic body’s notification stated, also cannot be celebrated on public roads and fund-raising activities for the festival too are not permissible.
The city, meanwhile, added 14 micro-containment zones, especially in the areas of Maninagar, Jodhpur and Gota on the day. The civic body vaccinated a record 25,746 citizens on the day, officials said. Acting on the Chief Minister Vijay Rupani’s announcement earlier this week making all government employees in Gujarat eligible for the Covid-19 vaccine, AMC said it will organise a inoculation camp at ISRO Space Applications Centre in Ahmedabad for all its employees.
After Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, now IIT-Gandhinagar has seen positive cases among its students. The institute’s public relation officer confirmed that currently 25 students were infected by the coronavirus disease and have been isolated on campus.
“We had entry-exit restrictions since March 8 or 9 and we saw students test positive some 10 days ago, following which we conducted rapid antigen tests for all our hostel residents,” an IIT-G official said. Currently, Gandhinagar has 238 active cases.
In Surat city, 607 new cases and two deaths were reported Saturday. Mayor Hemali Boghawala also tested positive and has been put on home isolation.
Ten positive cases were reported in Valsad district. Among those infected are BJP MLA Bharat Patel. Sources in Valsad district health department said Patel had taken Covod-19 vaccine last week before attending the state Assembly proceedings at Gandhinagar, which started from Monday onwards. Sources close to Patel said the legislator returned to Valsad on Friday evening and was feeling uneasy.
In-charge district health officer of Valsad Dr Manas Patel said, “Bharat Patel was tested on Saturday and was found positive for Covid-19. We have kept him under home quarantine. He had also taken first dose of vaccine last week. He had mild cold, fever and cough.”
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