Chennai | Jagran News Desk: Tamil Nadu chief minister MK Stalin on Wednesday announced that a night lockdown will be imposed in the state from January 6, which will start from 10 pm and will continue till 5 am.  A complete shutdown would be enforced on Sunday (January 9) and only 50 per cent occupancy shall be allowed in buses, suburban trains, and Metrorail, the government said.

The decision has been taken after the state reported a significant rise in new COVID-19 cases.  All government and privately organised harvest festival 'Pongal' and cultural events are postponed and entertainment and amusement parks would be shut down, an official release here said.

The public would not be allowed in all places of worship on three days -Fridays, Saturday and Sunday- a week. The present bar for social, cultural and political congregations would continue to be in place.

There will be no public transport available and also no metros will be in service during the Sunday lockdown. Restaurant takeaways will be allowed between 7 am and 10 pm and no food delivery will be allowed after this time, the order said.

Manufacturing factories and IT companies have been allowed to function, while Work From Home in encouraged, it added. Collectors have been asked to ensure the shifting of fish and vegetable markets to avoid overcrowding. However, walking on beaches is allowed.

Except for medical colleges, all other colleges, technical institutes have been shut, said the government, adding, only 50 per cent occupancy will be allowed in buses and trains and metros. All entertainment and amusement parks will be shut.

With new restrictions in place, Tamil Nadu many states including Delhi, Maharashtra, Punjab, Karnataka to impose fresh curbs to stem the growth of the coronavirus. 

Meanwhile, the Centre on Wednesday said the upsurge of COVID-19 cases is happening in cities and the Omicron variant is the predominant circulating strain. The government, however, said there is no need to panic and one must be alert, disciplined and prepared, adding that the country will face this phase of the pandemic as well.

The government further stated that Maharashtra, West Bengal, Delhi, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Jharkhand and Gujarat are emerging as states of concern due to the surge in COVID-19 cases. “A total of 28 districts are reporting over 10 per cent weekly Covid positivity, while 43 districts are reporting weekly positivity between 5-10 per cent,” the officials said.

A total of 2,135 cases of Omicron variant of coronavirus have been detected across 24 states and UTs, out of which, 828 have recovered or migrated, according to the Union health ministry data updated on Wednesday. Maharashtra recorded the maximum number of 653 cases followed by Delhi at 464, Kerala 185, Rajasthan 174, Gujarat 154 and Tamil Nadu 121 cases.

India saw a single-day rise of 58,097 new coronavirus infections, the highest in around 199 days, taking the total tally of cases to 3,50,18,358. The active cases were recorded above 2 lakh after around 81 days, according to the data updated at 8 am. The country's Covid death toll has climbed to 4,82,551 with 534 daily fatalities, the data stated.


Posted By: Talibuddin Khan