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Vikash Sharma

Bhubaneswar: The Odisha government on Thursday imposed stricter restrictions on movement of people across the State in view of the surging Covid-19 cases by clamping night curfew and additional weekend shutdowns in districts sharing borders with Chhattisgarh.

Apart from this, the State government also put curbs on the functioning of bars, restaurants and cinema halls.

Chief Secretary, Suresh Mohapatra said that clear instructions have been issued to ensure that all the bars, restaurants and cinema halls are allowed to function with 50 % capacity of patrons. All Covid-19 safety protocols will be strictly followed at these establishments.

The State government has also decided to suspend all Inter-State bus services from Odisha to other parts of the country from April 19. Already the bus services to Chhattisgarh from Odisha and the vice-versa have been suspended in view of the surge in the Covid cases in the neighbouring State.

Mohapatra said that there will be no restrictions on Inter-district movement of buses which will continue as usual. However, no standing passengers will be allowed in public transports.
It is pertinent to mention here that Odisha is witnessing a sharp increase in the daily Covid-19 cases since the past two weeks. The state reported the highest 2989 Covid-19 cases in the past 24 hours on Thursday. This was the biggest spike in daily cases reported so far this year.

Here are other key announcements:

– Maximum of two persons allowed in autorickshaws and taxis

– Maximum 200 persons allowed in Amusement parks, Meena Bazars

– Maximum 1,000 people, instead of 2,000 now allowed at Jatras/ Opera; Local administration to take necessary decision and ensure 6ft social distancing

– Government offices to function with 50 % staff strength

– 50 persons allowed in Marriage functions, 20 persons for funeral/cremation. No procession allowed. Covid protocols to be strictly followed, masks mandatory.

– Religious, social political, academic meetings , political processions and rallies not allowed
– Minimum rituals to be followed by religious institutions. Number of devotees to be limited. Final decision on regulating rush to be taken by Collectors, Municipal Commissioners

– Haat, Vegetable, fish markets to be segregated. Vendors/consumers to wear masks

– All Covid protocols to be followed by all commercial establishments. Shops to be sealed, licence cancelled for any violation.

– Special awareness campaigns to be launched to ensure that people use masks while speaking with each other.

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