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Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Pune: No lockdown but restrictions on pools, hotels, marriage halls may be imposed again, says Mayor

Earlier, the PMC had introduced prohibitory orders from 11 pm to 6 am every day and decided to not allow classroom teaching in schools, colleges and coaching classes till March 14.

Written by Ajay Jadhav | Pune |
Updated: March 11, 2021 1:54:32 am
Pune police cracks down on people who are violating Covid-19 guidelines, near Pune Railway Station on March 3. (Express Photo: Arul Horizon)

With the increasing daily positivity rate of Covid-19 cases in Pune city, Mayor Murlidhar Mohol on Wednesday indicated that a lockdown is unlikely to be imposed again but more restrictions are likely to be imposed on the functioning of marriage halls, swimming pools, gymnasiums and gardens to contain the spread of the infection.

“The surge in Covid-19 cases is a cause of concern for the city and there has been no success in breaking the chain of viral infections, given the present restrictions. A review meeting on the Covid-19 situation would be held by Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar on Friday… some restrictions are likely to be imposed in the city again but there will be no lockdown,” said Mohol on Wednesday.

He said decisions such as closing gardens in the evening as well as more restrictions on swimming pools, marriage halls and gymnasiums are under consideration. “Discussions are going on about whether to reduce the time period when restaurants are allowed to be open… and if additional restrictions should be introduced on weekends. However, the final decision would be taken in the review meeting where officials of PMC, police and health department will be present,” said Mohol.

The mayor said the PMC has equipped a few hospitals with oxygen facilities for Covid-19 patients. “We have passed through this phase in the past and the system is efficient enough to handle the situation. The situation is in control but should not deteriorate,” he cautioned.

Earlier, the PMC had introduced prohibitory orders from 11 pm to 6 am every day and decided to not allow classroom teaching in schools, colleges and coaching classes till March 14. The strategy of declaring containment zones in affected areas was reintroduced on March 1 after a gap of two months.

After the recent surge, the PMC has decentralised decisions on containment zones, directing ward offices to take decisions based on the situation. Any building with at least five active cases, or a housing society or locality with at least 20 active cases, has to be sealed to contain the spread.

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The PMC started witnessing a surge in Covid-19 cases from the first week of February. The daily positivity rate, which was around 5 per cent then, has now increased to almost 18 per cent in the last two days, with the number of new cases once again crossing 1,000.

On Wednesday, the PMC identified 1,352 new cases, and a daily positivity rate of 17.51 per cent. The number of active Covid-19 cases in the city has increased to 7,719 in comparison to only 1,383 a month ago.

The PMC registered seven deaths due to the infection on Wednesday, taking the toll to 4,910 so far.


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