Following Karanataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai's admission to the state's alarming rate of increase in COVID-19 patients attributed mainly to the Omicron variant, the government announced the resumption of weekend curfews in the southern state.
Starting from Friday, the curfew will allow essential services, inclusive of public transport, while hotels will operate with no interruption within the ascribed capacity, the government stated. The hype holds relevance as Bengaluru alone recorded 3,048 cases in a single day, as per data at 10 p.m. on Tuesday.
"In the first and second waves of COVID-19, the infection rate used to double once in 15 days and 8-10 days, respectively. But now, this is doubling in 1-2 days. We need to be cautious, Karnataka's Health Minister Sudhakar had stated.
During a press briefing on Tuesday, the state's Revenue Minister R Ashoka confirmed that 'coronavirus cases in the state have been rising twice as faster compared to earlier' while stating that 147 fresh Omicron infections were reported on January 3. While mentioning that the Omicron variant is spiking 'five fold', he said the state has brought about guidelines to curb the spread.
"Bengaluru accounts for 85% of the state's new cases. Schools will be shut for two weeks," the Minister said at the press briefing.
"Theatres, malls, pubs & bars are allowed to operate at 50% capacity, no gatherings allowed at public places. Schools in Bengaluru, apart from 10th and 12th standards to be shut down for two weeks from 6th January," Karnataka minister R Ashoka added.
Night Curfew will continue to be imposed from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. in the entire State as per the existing guidelines.
All offices will function 5 days a week from Monday to Friday during this period.
The Government Secretariat will run with officials below the rank of Under Secretary at 50% of the working strength.
There shall be a weekend curfew from Friday 10 p.m. to Monday 5 a.m. in the state as per the guidelines attached.
The Public transport including BMRCL will operate as per the directions of the Chief Executive of the organization to cater to the needs of people for emergent purposes during the weekend curfew.
In Bengaluru Urban district, all schools and colleges except Medical and Para Medical will remain closed with effect from 06-01-2022 except classes 10, 11 and 12.
Pubs/Clubs/Restaurants/Bars/Hotels/Eating places in hotels etc will function at 50% of the seating capacity, strictly adhering to COVID-appropriate behaviour and entry to such places will be restricted to fully vaccinated persons.
Cinema — Halls/Multiplexes/Theatres/Rangamandiras/Auditorium and similar places to operate with 50% of its seating capacity strictly adhering to COVID-appropriate behaviour and entry to such places will be restricted to fully vaccinated persons.
Wedding functions are permitted to be conducted involving not more than 200 people in open spaces and 100 people in closed places, strictly adhering to COVID-19 appropriate behaviour and prevailing ‘guidelines issued by state government.
Religious places are allowed to open only for darshan. No seva, etc., are allowed. Entry of people will be restricted to 50 fully vaccinated persons at any given time.
Malls, shopping complexes, all standalone shops and establishments shall operate as usual during weekdays.
Swimming pools and gyms shall operate at 50% capacity but entry will be restricted to fully vaccinated persons.
Sports complexes and stadia are allowed to function with 50% capacity.
All rallies, dharnas, protests are prohibited.
There shall be intensive surveillance at the border of Kerala and Maharashtra as per the prevailing circular/guidelines issued by the Department of Health and Family Welfare, Govt. of Karnataka. The same guidelines are extended to the state of Goa. The checks are on all.