Will roll back easing of Covid restrictions, warns Health Ministry
New Delhi, July 6, 2021
The Union Health Ministry on Tuesday warned that gross violations of Covid-19 appropriate behaviour after easing of lockdown restrictions in different parts of the country could lead to a rollback of the relaxations.
During a mediabriefing on the situation of the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, which is on a downward trajectory at the moment in the country, the ministry highlighted pictures from different places showing gross violation of Covid-related rules.
Referring to the massive footfall of people in hill stations like Manali, Shimla, and Mussoorie, Joint Secretary, Health, Lav Agarwal on Tuesday stated that people travelling to hill stations are not following Covid-appropriate behaviour.
He also cited recent incidents of overcrowding at markets in Delhi and Mumbai.
"We can nullify the easing of restrictions again if protocols are not complied with," he said.
"After the lockdown restrictions were lifted, people think that the Covid pandemic has gone, but they must understand the fact that second wave is still existent in a limited way in some areas," Agarwal added.
Sharing photos of the footfall of tourists at hill stations, Indian Council of Medical Research Director General, Dr Balram Bhargava, expressing his concern, said: "Pictures from hill stations are frightening. People must comply with Covid-appropriate behaviour, otherwise whatever we have gained so far will be ruined."
He also stressed that people and local authorities must understand that the Covid pandemic was still existing in the country. "Instead of highlighting the wave aspect, we should focus on Covid-appropriate behaviour to contain the spread," he added.
In wake of the massive rush of tourists in hill stations, the Union Health Ministry has also written to the Himachal Pradesh government over rampant flouting of Covid norms in Shimla and Manali.