Center urges states, UTs to restrict mass gathering during festivals



The Union Health Ministry has cautioned the States and Union Territories and advised them to consider imposing local restrictions on public celebrations, including Holi, Shab-e-Barat, Bihu, Easter and Eid-ul-Fitr and limit mass gatherings.

"Any laxity at this point in ensuring strict adherence to various Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) issued by the Ministry to contain the spread of COVID-19, may result in losing the impetus and benefits that the country has gained so far in managing the virus," read the letter issued by Union Additional Secretary Arti Ahuja, to all the States and UTs' Chief Secretaries.

"Strict adherence to COVID appropriate behaviour in public places and gatherings is the key to break the chain of transmission and reduce the incidence of cases in the country," she added.

Reportedly, administrations of major cities of Mumbai, Delhi have also ordered the ban of Holi celebrations and other festivals in public places due to the rise in COVID-19 cases.

"Violating the orders will be booked under Epidemic Act 1897 and National Disaster Management Act 2005," read the order.

(Edited by Gabriel G Momin)


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