He also said authorities are alert in the wake of the new Covid-19 variant ‘Omicron’ reported in some countries. Asked if any advisory has been issued following the detection of Omicron, Khattar said the state’s ‘Mahamari Alert-Surakshit Haryana’ is already in place, under which relaxations are either given or curtailed from time to time depending on the prevailing Covid-19 situation.
The state government has termed the lockdown ‘Mahamari Alert-Surakshit Haryana (Epidemic Alert-Safe Haryana)’. The restrictions were imposed on May 3, 2021, and subsequently extended from time to time. The curbs have been extended till December 31.
“We have issued a Mahamari alert… We received several suggestions on giving further relaxations, but we haven’t because of the new variant,” Khattar told the media here. He said the deputy commissioners of districts have been authorised to give permissions for melas and large gatherings, including the annual Gita Mahotsav in Kurukshetra next month, after ensuring precautions and COVID-19 protocols.
“I have been regularly monitoring the Covid-19 infection numbers. There has been no significant change (jump in cases) so far,” he said.
Amid mounting global concerns over Omicron, PM Narendra Modi had on Saturday stressed the need to be proactive. He had also directed officials to review plans on easing of international travel restrictions.
Modi, who chaired a comprehensive meeting to review the situation related to Covid-19 and vaccination in the country, was briefed by top health officials about Omicron, described by WHO as a “variant of concern”, with its characteristics and its impact seen in various countries.