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Lockdown extended in Bihar till August 16 as Covid cases near 50,000

By Team BiharConnect

Bihar government has extended the lockdown till August 16 as the number of Covid cases surged close to 50,000. Schools, colleges, coaching institutions, shopping malls will remain closed. Shops will be allowed to open with certain restrictions. All transport services will also remain suspended with some exceptions.

However, as per the new guidelines that come into effect from August 1, private offices will be allowed to operate with 50 per cent staff strength. The offices of the central and state governments as also the autonomous institutions will operate with 50 per cent staff.

The number of Covid cases have jumped in Bihar in the recent weeks. On Thursday 2,082 new cases were reported. This took the total number of Covid positive cases to 48,001. The daily average increase in the Covid positive cases in the past five days have been over 2000. The total Covid positive cases increased from 36,314 on July 25 to 48,001 on July 30. The number is expected to cross 50,000 on July 31.

Bihar government had imposed complete lockdown in the state on July 16 to control the rise in the cases. The lockdown that was imposed on July 16 was supposed to end on July 31. The new guideline issued on July 30 will remain effective from August 1 to August 16.

Home Department, Government of Bihar, issued an order in this regard on Thursday, a day after the Union Ministry of Home Affairs issued guidelines for Unlock 3.

The Union Ministry of Home Affairs had decided to lift the night curfew. However, the Bihar government has decided to continue with the night curfew. As per the new guidelines the movement of individuals shall remain strictly prohibited between 1O.OO PM to 5.00 AM throughout the State except for essential activities, including operation of industrial units in multiple shifts, movement of persons and goods on National and State Highways, loading and unloading of cargo and travel of persons to their destinations after disembarking from buses’ trains and airplanes.

Local authorities shall issue orders, in the entire area of their jurisdiction, under appropriate provisions of law’ such as under Section 144 of CrPC, and ensure strict compliance, the Home Department order said.

The District Magistrates cannot dilute restrictions imposed vide the aforesaid guidelines but, based on their assessment of the situation, may prohibit certain activities in areas outside containment zones, or impose such further restrictions as deemed necessary.

All construction related activities will be allowed along with the functioning of construction related shops.

All agriculture related activities will be allowed along with the functioning of agriculture related shops.

All educational, training, research, coaching institutions, etc. shall remain closed. Online/distance learning shall continue to be permitted and shall be encouraged.

All places of worship shall be closed for public. No religious congregation will be permitted, without any exception.

All social / political / sports / entertainment / academic / cultural / religious functions / gathering and opening of parks and gymnasiums shall be barred.

Shopping malls will not open. Restaurants / Dhabas / Eateries will be allowed to open with home delivery / take away services only.

Shops and markets will be allowed to operate subject to restrictions regarding staggering, timing etc. being imposed by the District Administrations.

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