Amidst new variants, governments demand calm

State governments prepare for more stringent measures to curb growing Omicron cases


Recording as many as 5,481 cases in the last 24 hours on January 4, 2022, Delhi government announced a weekend curfew in the city to address the surge in Covid-19 cases.

The weekend lockdown will begin from January 8. Apart from essential services, all government offices will remain closed while employees will work from home. Meanwhile, private offices can call only 50 percent of the workforce to the office. Delhi Metro and DTC buses will run with full capacity but commuters must wear a mask for travel.

Deputy Chief Minister Shri Manish Sisodia on Tuesday said, “Leave houses only in case of emergency or in need of essential services. On the basis of the experiences so far, experts believe that this variant is not fatal and the Delhi government is fully prepared to fight it.”

He appealed to the people to remain calm, wear a mask and follow all Covid-19 protocols. The city recorded an increasing number of Omicron cases recently. As per the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, the city reported 382 Omicron cases by Tuesday. Although only 350 people are hospitalized and only 124 patients are on oxygen beds. Seven people were also reported to be on ventilators.

As per government data, 8,511 out of 9,042 hospital beds are vacant. Moreover, 4,223 out of 4,547 beds are available in dedicated Covid-care centres and 139 out of 140 beds are available in dedicated Covid-health centres. Therefore, Sisodia appealed that infected people should opt for hospitals only in case of decreasing oxygen levels.

Meanwhile, Mumbai Mayor Kishori Pednekar aired the possibility of imposing a lockdown in the city if cases keep rising. She said the need for the lockdown will be imminent if the daily cases cross the 20,000-mark. Similarly, persisting crowding is another factor to be considered for the lockdown, she said.

Already schools have been closed for classes 1 to 9 and class 11 until January 31. Mumbai police also issued an order prohibiting people from visiting beaches, open grounds, sea faces, promenades, gardens, parks, or similar public places between 5 PM and 5 AM until January 15 due to a rise in Omicron cases. Marriages whether in enclosed or open spaces can only welcome 50 persons while funerals will only allow 20 persons. Overall, Maharashtra reported the highest number of Omicron cases, 568 cases, by Tuesday.

In light of this number, the Karnataka government is also preparing for an “inescapable” third wave of the virus, reported The Times of India. Before the night curfew ends on January 7, senior officials will meet to discuss more stringent restrictions. Accordingly, sufficient oxygen supply, ICU beds, etc. is another priority for the government. It also mandated a negative RT-PCR report along with a fully vaccinated certificate to enter the state.

At the national level, India recorded over 146.70 cr vaccinations by early Tuesday morning. Nearly 1 cr doses were administered in the last 24 hours. However, out of the total figure, 42.06 lakh of these doses were administered to the 15-18 age group for the first time.

The country’s active caseload was at 1,71,830 cases – less than one percent of total cases – with a recovery rate of 98.13 percent. More than 152.96 crore vaccine doses have been provided to states and union territories with more than 19.69 cr balance and unutilized doses still available with the state and union territories, said the union ministry.


Delhi: 923 new Covid cases reported in 24 hours, an 86% rise
Covid in 2022: Is India battle-ready?
Covid-19: Have we learnt anything from challenges faced in 2021?



Related Articles