MHA says people flouting COVID-19 norms, sends note to States

It asks States, UTs to make officials concerned personally responsible for any laxity in strict enforcement of COVID-19 appropriate behaviour

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) on Wednesday asked the States and Union Territories to make the officials concerned personally responsible for any laxity in the strict enforcement of COVID-19 appropriate behaviour. Blatant violations of COVID-19 norms had been observed in several parts of the country, particularly in public transport and at hill stations, it noted.

Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla, in letters to the States and Union Territories, said massive crowds were thronging market places, violating the norms of social distancing. Consequently, the increase in Reproduction factor (an indicator of spread of COVID-19) in some States was a matter of concern.

The authorities concerned needed to be made responsible for ensuring COVID-19 appropriate behaviour in all the crowded places, besides the hotspots of virus transmission. There was no room for complacency as the second wave was not yet over. If the norms were not maintained at any establishment, premises, markets etc., restrictions should be reimposed to contain the virus spread and the defaulters should be held liable for action under the relevant laws, he stated.

“You would appreciate that we must guard ourselves against complacency and laxity, which creep in as positivity declines. Instead, during the periods of low positivity, efforts must be stepped up to prevent any probable future surge,” he observed.

He reiterated the importance of the five-fold strategy of test-track-treat-vaccination and adherence to COVID-19 appropriate behaviour.

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