No more lockdowns, central govt tells states
November 26 2020 12:03 AM
A civil defence volunteer wearing a Covid-19 coronavirus-themed helmet distributes a placard to a ve
A civil defence volunteer wearing a Covid-19 coronavirus-themed helmet distributes a placard to a vendor during an awareness campaign at a market in New Delhi yesterday.

IANS /New Delhi

The government yesterday issued a 19-point Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) giving approval to states to impose restrictions if necessary to combat the coronavirus infections.
The SOPs, part of a month-long guidelines issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs, will be effective from December 1 to 31.
States and Union Territories (UTs) have been allowed to impose night curfews but “shall not be allowed impose any local lockdown outside the containment zones, without prior consultation with the Centre”.
Staggered office timings and other suitable measures should be implemented in cities where the positivity rate is at least 10% to ensure social distancing.
The MHA has also not restricted inter-state or intra-state movement.
People above 65 years of age, those with comorbidities, pregnant women and children below the age of 10 years have been advised to stay home.
The district authorities have been asked to carefully demarcate containment zones.
The authorities have also been asked to notify the list of containment zones on the website of respective district collectors.
Health Minister Harsh Vardhan yesterday said India is looking at robust vaccine manufacturing and delivering ecosystem to meet demand in the coming days.
India, with the second-highest coronavirus cases after the US, has at least five vaccine candidates under human trial, of which three are undergoing advanced Phase-2/3 clinical trials to establish safety and efficacy.
“As the world races to find a cure and vaccine for Covid-19, India is looking to be self-reliant in both – vaccine and its mass production. Called as the pharmacy of the world, India has the largest capacity to produce Covid-19 vaccines,” Vardhan said.
Recently, the minister had said the government has modified an electronic network to monitor the dosage of Covid vaccines, vaccinators and geographical location of the vaccine recipients.
On Tuesday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi chaired a high-level meeting in which the modalities of Covid-19 vaccine delivery, distribution and administration were discussed.
He reassured that the government is keeping watch on developments.
Meanwhile, Apollo Hospitals are gearing up to give 1mn vaccines a day once it is available across India through its hospitals, clinics, health centres, pharmacies and Apollo 24|7.
Apollo 24/7 is doing a survey asking customers whether they will take the vaccine and also making them register.
The Covid test positivity rate in Kerala continues to hover below 10%, indicating the situation is getting better, Health Minister K K Shailaja said.
She also said that 5,770 people turned negative, taking the total cured to 5,11,008 while the state has 65,106 active cases.

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