Chandigarh | Jagran News Desk: The Charanjit Singh Channi-led Congress government in Punjab on Tuesday imposed a night curfew in the state amid fears over the Omicron variant of COVID-19. Issuing fresh guidelines, the state government said that the night curfew will begin at 10 pm and continue till 5 am, adding that authorities can impose Section 144 CrPC accordingly.

All schools, colleges and educational institutions will also remain shut in Punjab till further orders, said the Punjab government while adding that online education should be promoted. It, however, noted that medical and nursing colleges can continue to operate normally.

The state government also ordered bars, cinemas halls, multiplexes, malls, restaurants, spas, museums and zoos to operate at their 50 per cent capacity and noted that their staff should be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. However, it said that all sports complexes, stadia, swimming pools and gyms will remain shut, except being used for training of sportspersons for participation in national or international sports events.

Noting that work from home should be promoted, it said that only fully vaccinated staff would be allowed in government and private offices, including those working in factories and industries. The Punjab government also said that it would mandatory for people to follow appropriate COVID-19 norms, including the usage of facemasks and practicing social distancing.

Punjab, where assembly elections are slated to take place in February or March this year - has been witnessing a spike in COVID-19 cases. On Monday, the state reported 419 fresh cases, taking the state's infection tally to over 6.05 lakh. The number of active cases rose to 1,741 from 1,369 a day before. Of fresh cases, Patiala reported 143 infections, followed by 58 in Pathankot, 57 in Ludhiana and 30 in Mohali, the state health department said.

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma