New Delhi: The West Bengal government has decided to take a tougher stance in dealing with COVID-19 violators. State Chief Secretary HK Dwidevi on Saturday (July 17) asked the district administrations to take necessary steps against those who flout COVID-19 protocols.
“The CS has instructed the DMs to take serious action against the violators. Anyone coming out of the residence between 9 pm and 5 am without any valid reason must be dealt with as per the rule book,” PTI quoted a source as saying.
According to official sources, violators will have to face strict action as per provisions of the Disaster Management Act and the Indian Penal Code (IPC) including fine, Dwidevi told disaster magistrates at a virtual meeting.
Dwidevi also instructed DMs to check if shopkeepers, vendors and others are adhering to the coronavirus guidelines and not keeping markets, malls or restaurants open beyond the permissible time.
The West Bengal government has extended the ongoing restrictions till July 30 taking into consideration the warning of experts about a possible third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. The local train services will remain suspended except the staff special trains. However, certain relaxations including allowing Metro Railway to resume operations at 50 per cent seating capacity on weekdays have been given. Public buses, taxis and autorickshaws have been permitted to operate in the state at 50 per cent capacity. Gymnasiums and beauty parlours can also operate with 50 per cent strength from 11 am to 6 pm. Vegetable markets can remain open from 6 am till noon.
On Saturday, the state’s COVID-19 death toll increased to 17,988 after eight fresh fatalities were reported. With 899 new cases, the total tally mounted to 15,17,380, the health department said in a bulletin. The active cases count currently stands at 13,333.
(With agency inputs)