10 deaths in 24-hour in Himachal

10 deaths in 24-hour in Himachal

Shimla: As the campaign in four key towns –Solan, Dharamshala, Palampur and Mandi, slated to go to the poll on April 7 for local Municipal Corporations, the Covid spread has sent a worst shock wave.

The state witnessed an all-time high fatality and even unusually high number of positive cases in the past 24 hours.

With 406 fresh cases and 10 deaths, Himachal Pradesh is once again a hotspot of the Coronavirus –a position which the state had witnessed in October –November 2020.

Eight people had died on Saturday. The total death toll in the state has risen to 1057, which is an addition of more than 60 deaths in the past 34 days.

But, the state government has ruled out imposition of any lockdown simply because of the fact that the BJP, currently in power, will earn the annoyance of the voters –the business community and hoteliers in the Municipal polls.

The educational institutions including schools, colleges and universities have been closed till April 15 fearing a further spike in the cases.All religious and social gatherings are banned but the BJP's star campaigners including Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur and cabinet ministers are on campaign trail in Mandi, Solan and Palampur –all three new corporations formed in October 2020.

"Chief Minister himself has violated the Covid norms.He has misused the helicopters and deputed his ministers and MLAs use all tricks to pressurise the voters. The citizens are subjected to restrictions and also being fined for Rs 2000 for not wearing masks. There is no rule for Chief Minister," said PCC president Kuldeep Rathore at Mandi on Saturday.

But the state government says holding elections to the Municipal Corporation is a constitutional requirement thus cant be stopped. There are chances of fresh curbs after April 7 in the state.

Among those who died in the past 24 hours include four from Una –a district bordering Punjab; two each in Shimla and Mandi. A 99-year old male died at Mandi while another 91-year old male lost to the Covid in Una.

Biggest surge of cases has been reported from Kangra district with 712 active cases followed by Solan having 658 active cases.

The weekend has seen a highest influx of the tourists to Shimla creating fresh fears about the infection spread.The police had a tough time to enforce the mask restrictions as many tourists walked free without masks.

Last week, Rohtang Tunnel broke a record of 6000 vehicles crossing the Tunnel to Lahaul Spiti hinting at increased tourists footfall in the state.

Thirteen students from Delhi's St Stephen's who returned from Himachal Pradesh were tested positive.

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