Bihar likely to enforce weekend lockdown as Covid cases surge

New Delhi: Worried over the sudden rise in fresh Covid-19 cases across all the districts of Bihar, the state government led by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar is likely to follow the weekend lockdown strategy to put a check on the transmission of Coronavirus in the state.

However, the final decision in this regard would be taken on Saturday after an all-party meeting to be chaired by Governor Phagu Chauhan.

The state has been witnessing a huge rise in Covid-19 cases in recent weeks and the highly infectious disease has infected a Bihar minister and top level of bureaucracy, including the Chief Secretary.

As Covid-19 cases see a new rise, the Chief Minister on Thursday stressed on ramping up the test of samples and intensification of vaccination drive to deal with challenges posed by the second wave of the deadly disease.

In the long list of infected persons, Social Welfare Minister Madan Sahni, Chief Secretary Arun Kumar Singh, Additional Chief Secretary Home Chaitanya Prasad and Principal Secretary Finance S Siddarth are among the new entrants in Bihar.

The Chief Minister told reporters that the state government is closely monitoring the COVID situation and taking all necessary steps to check the spread of the virus.

The CM further said that series of restrictions like the closure of shops and business establishments by 7 pm every day, suspending the operation of schools, colleges and coaching institutes till April 18 and limiting attendance of participants in last rites to 50 and in marriage and shradh to 200 have already been enforced in the state.

In a precautionary measure, major political parties, including the ruling JD(U) and main opposition RJD, have closed their party offices. The JD(U)'s party office would remain closed till April 20, while the RJD has locked its office from April 15 till further orders.

However, other major political parties, including BJP, Congress and CPI(ML) are operating their offices with strict instructions to abide by Covid-19 protocol.

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