Coronavirus: Karnataka announces 33-hour long lockdown in Bengaluru as Covid cases mount

The Karnataka government has decided to clamp a 33-hours-long hard lockdown in capital city of Bengaluru and adjoining areas starting 8pm on Saturday till 5am on Monday to cut the chain of Covid 19 transmissions in the region, which has witnessed a spurt in cases in the last couple of weeks.

Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) commissioner Anil Kumar said the instruction for lockdown in BBMP limits was issued by chief minister BS Yediyurappa , according to news agency ANI.

Kumar said only essential services will be permitted to operate during the 33 hour long period and those found roaming around will be liable for police action.

“Sale of essential items will be allowed during the lockdown, including meat shops. Police action will be taken against people found roaming outside unnecessarily,” Anil Kumar was quoted as having said by ANI.

The lockdown decision is part of a multi-pronged strategy adopted by the state government to contain the spread of the disease. The state Covid 19 task force has decided to set up booth-level committees across the state including 8,800 committees in Bengaluru for effective monitoring and surveillance of Covid 19 situation.

The task force also released detailed guidelines for home isolation of asymptomatic cases including increasing the period of home isolation from 14 to 17 days for patients below 50 years of age.

The decision for constituting booth-level committees consisting of one member each from the state health department, police force, local municipalities or Panchayat and volunteers, was taken on Friday.

In Bengaluru alone 8,800 teams will be formed for the purpose of real time monitoring and data compilation. They will be imparted training for the purpose. It was also decided to have at least two ambulances in each of the 198 wards of the capital city.

Covid patients above 50 years of age with comorbidities will be treated at the Covid care centres only under active medical supervision and be subjected to regular tests.

The state government has also been decided to increase the testing capacity from the existing 15,000 samples a day to 25,000 samples daily. The task force has also recommended antigen tests in crowded areas to check the presence of community spread.

A week ago, on June 27, Karnataka government had decided to implement one-day statewide lockdown on Sundays beginning July 5 to break the chain of Covid 19 infections. The government had also decided to keep all government offices closed on all Saturdays with effect from July 10.

Another instruction had been issued to BBMP commissioner to set up more number of wholesale vegetable markets to avoid crowds in large wholesale vegetable markets in the city.

The total number of cases in Karnataka stands at 19,710. Out of them, 8,805 have recovered and 293 patients have lost their lives, according to the Union Health Ministry.

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