December 16, 2021 1:28:36 pm
The Puducherry government has relaxed curbs for Christmas and New Year celebrations despite extending the lockdown till January 2.
In an order issued on Wednesday, it stated that the night curfew, which will be in place from December 15 to January 2, has been relaxed on December 24 and 25 for Christmas celebrations. On December 30, 31, January 1 and 2, its timing will be from 2 am till 5 am. Night curfew usually comes into effect at 11 pm and is in place till 5 am.
Social and cultural gatherings have also been permitted during the aforesaid period, but people have been asked to adhere to all Covid-19 norms.
Following the approval of the concerned licensing authorities, all hotels, bars and liquor shops have been allowed to operate beyond the normal hours on New Year’s Eve.
Churches, too, will remain open for the public after 10 pm on December 24 and 25 for prayers. All religious places of worship will remain open for the public after 10 pm on New Year’s Eve.
The health department has been instructed to ensure 100 per cent vaccination of all eligible people in the Union Territory.
“The Health Department shall keep a close watch of persons coming from foreign countries in view of threats imposed by the Omicron variant. It shall also step-up efforts for enforcing compulsory vaccination besides carrying out door to door vaccination in the UT (Union Territory) which is lagging in vaccination when compared to other states,” the order read.
The Union Territory on Wednesday recorded 13 new coronavirus cases, taking the cumulative total to 1,29,261. The UT has 173 active cases.
Speaking to indianexpress.com, G Sriramulu, the director of the health department, said Covid-19 cases have been below 30 for the past 10 days. He further informed that in November, the cases were below 50 and has been reducing every passing day.
When asked as to whether any special arrangements were made by the officials in regards to the New Year celebrations, Sriramulu said they will hold meetings in this regard and initiate necessary actions, like monitoring entries, and insisting Covid-19 vaccination certificate upon arrival.
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