THE AUTHORITIES in Haryana’s Fatehabad district have launched a campaign asking the public to desist from playing cards and smoking hookahs in groups to enforce social distancing during the COVID-19 outbreak.
“We have not issued separate orders to ban hookah and playing cards in groups but gathering of more than five persons has already been banned to halt the spread of coronavirus. The administration has already issued prohibitory orders under Section 144 of the CrPC,” said Sanjay Bishnoi, sub-divisional magistrate (SDM) of Fatehabad, while speaking to The Indian Express.
Bishnoi said that on Tuesday they put up posters in various villages, urging people to avoid social gatherings during the curfew period. “If anybody is found violating lockdown orders, action will be initiated for disobedience of prohibitory orders under Section 188 of the CrPC,” said Bishnoi, adding, “We are continuously making announcements though loudspeakers to make people aware about the deadly disease.”
Former Haryana Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare Minister Om Prakash Dhankar has already appealed to villagers to not play cards and smoke hookahs in groups. He had even uploaded videos on TikTok to urge farmers to follow the norm of social distancing.
A health official said have asked farmers to ensure that not more than two persons travel by bullock cart. “If a farmer family has more than two members who wish to travel by a bullock cart, we ask them to keep distance from each other. More than two persons are not allowed in cars too. If anybody comes from other states…their house is put under quarantine,” added the official.
At a meeting in Fatehabad Tuesday, Haryana Labour Minister Anoop Dhanak said, “The pasting of quarantine posters in front of houses doesn’t mean that the person concerned has been infected by the coronavirus. It simply means that the person has visited a coronavirus affected area.”
Meanwhile, in villages like Khajuri, Mohamadpur Rohi, Dhangar, Gorakhpur, Nehla and Dehman of Fatehabad district, villagers were seen following lockdown orders. Officials have even urged the heads of temples to keep temples closed during the lockdown period. Movement of migrant labourers is not allowed. Apart from police, villagers are also guarding boundaries of their villages.
Fatehabad Deputy Commissioner Ravi Prakash Gupta said nobody from the district had tested positive for the coronavirus till Tuesday.
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