ITANAGAR, Jul 19: The state government has extended the lockdown in the Itanagar capital region (ICR) for two more weeks.
Chief Secretary Naresh Kumar informed during a virtual press briefing on Sunday that the lockdown will now end at 5 am of 3 August.
He said the decision has been taken in view of the rapid increase in the number of Covid-19 positive cases in the ICR, adding that the district administration needs time to control the transmission.
“More number of cases has been reported in the capital region over the past weeks, and the district administration and the health department need more time to contain the transmission. That’s why the lockdown is needed,” Kumar said.
He said the DC and the health department would make “all possible efforts to contain the transmission and break the transmission chain.”
The CS informed that the health department has sufficient quantity of antigen test kits, and that antigen tests would be carried out at the check gates across the state.
Only if a person tests negative will they be allowed to enter the state, he said.
As per the standard operating procedure (SOP), grocery shops and vegetable vendors will be regulated by the DCs, with home delivery and e-commerce being the preferable modes.
The state secretariat and directorate, the CM and DCM offices, the home department, the police HQ, the finance & planning, treasury, health, disaster management, public works (roads & highways), power, education, women & child development, land management and PHE departments, along with the NIC, the APPSC, the APSSB, and the SJETA will remain open during the lockdown.
The ICR DC office, the police department, the courts, the fire and emergency services and jails will function, and so will electricity, water and sanitation services. Movement of vehicles and people is restricted, except those exempted under the SOP.
Meanwhile, Health Secretary P Parthiban informed that Nirjuli, which has 13 positive cases, and Sector A Dokum, which has 31 positive cases, have been identified as the “most vulnerable sectors” in the ICR.
He said “extra precautions and extensive surveillance will be carried out to contain the areas.”
Parthiban also informed that the health department is procuring 20 basic life support ambulances and 10 advanced life support ambulances.
Opening & closing of shops
The ICR administration will regulate the opening and closing of ration, grocery, vegetable and meat shops in various sectors, colonies and main market areas during the lockdown.
Such shops will remain open only on 20, 21 and 28 July, from 8 am to 4 pm.
While home delivery and e-commerce services are allowed to operate, they will have to strictly follow the SOP during deliveries. The areas of operation of home delivery services will also be regulated.
On the three opening days, the vegetables/meat vendors are also allowed to operate from the main markets in Ganga, Akashdeep, C Sector, Gandhi Market, Naharlagun, Nirjuli and Banderdewa as usual, as many grocery items and vegetables are not sufficiently available in the sector/colony markets.
The shops in various sectors/colonies will also remain open and do business as usual within the stipulated time period.
However, officials will regulate the crowd/public in following the SOP of social distancing, mask wearing, etc, through public announcements, and impose penalty wherever required as per the MHA’s directions.
The vendors are also allowed to sell their vegetables/meat at various sectors on vehicles/mobile shops, etc, within the stipulated time period.
The ICR administration has also issued an order which states that the movement of people to and from the ICR to other districts or states shall not be allowed except for medical emergencies, essential services and exempted categories, with the prior approval of the deputy commissioners concerned.
For attending emergency works, including under centrally-sponsored schemes, other offices and officials in the civil secretariat/directorate will be allowed to move as they are permitted to work with the prior approval of the chief secretary.
The officers/officials under the exempted category residing in any containment zone would have to convey in writing to the heads of departments for exemption.
In view of the heavy monsoon, henceforth the movement of all heavy vehicles will be allowed only via the Banderdewa gate.
The other terms and conditions remain unchanged.