Amid fears of a third wave of coronavirus and cases of its highly infectious 'Delta Plus' variant emerging in Maharashtra, the state has tightened restrictions with effect from Monday. The new order will impact cities like Nagpur, Thane and Pune as they had seen more relaxations than Mumbai, which continued to be under 'level 3' restrictions, despite qualifying for 'level 1' where all curbs are allowed to be lifted.
Earlier on Friday, the state government had announced a 'state-level trigger' for imposing restrictions in administrative units irrespective of the weekly positivity rate and oxygen bed occupancy percentage.
Earlier this month, the Maharashtra government had introduced a graded system of easing the lockdown-like curbs in each district, considering the COVID-19 weekly positivity rate and occupancy of oxygen beds. However, last week, the Maharashtra government modified the graded system and said the entire state will have 'level 3' restrictions.
Maharashtra COVID-19 restrictions: Here are the guidelines
- Essential shops will be allowed to remain open only till 4 pm on all days
- Non-essential shops and establishments can remain open till 4 pm only on weekdays
- Restaurants are allowed to operate the dine-in facility with 50 per cent capacity till 4 pm on weekdays. Takeaways and home deliveries after that
- Suburban trains will operate only for medical staff and personnel engaged in essential services
- Gyms and salons are allowed to remain open till 4 pm at 50 per cent capacity
The weekly positivity rate regarding levels of restrictions will be determined on the basis of RT-PCR tests, and not rapid antigen or other tests, the state government had said while describing the 'Delta Plus' as a variant of concern.
Restrictions in administrative units will remain at a level, not below 3, the government had said and also called for pushing for 70 per cent vaccination of eligible population in the state.
District administrations have been asked to take various steps, including testing, vaccination and enforcement of COVID-19 appropriate behaviour and penalty for violators.
If there is an upward trend in the number of coronavirus positive cases, the district disaster management authority will impose higher level of restrictions, the order said.
Attempts must be made to achieve 70 per cent vaccination of eligible population and focus should on the test, track and treat methodology to contain the spread of COVID-19, it had said.
COVID-19 cases in Maharashtra
Maharashtra on Sunday reported 9,974 fresh coronavirus positive cases and 143 fatalities, taking the tally of infections to 60,36,821 and the toll to 1,21,286, the state Health Department said. A total of 8,562 patients were discharged during the day, taking the count of recoveries in Maharashtra to 57,90,113 so far, leaving the state with 1,22,252 active cases, it said.
Mumbai reported 739 fresh cases and 13 deaths, raising the cumulative caseload to 7,20,349 and the number of the COVID-19 decreased to 15,396.
Mumbai division, including the city and satellite towns, added 2,188 new cases to its tally and 25 deaths, which raised the total caseload to 15,89,869 and the fatality count to 31,858, the report said.
Nashik division reported 653 cases during the day including 373 infections in Ahmednagar district and 161 in Nashik district.
Pune division reported 2,575 fresh cases including 929 in Satara district and 587 in Pune district.
Kolhapur division added 3,821 infections including 1,192 in Kolhapur district and 992 in Sangli district, the report said.
Aurangabad division added 222 cases, Latur division 235, Akola division 176 cases and Nagpur division 104 during the day.
With 2,10,866 new tests, the number of samples tested so far in Maharashtra has gone up to 4,10,42,198, the department said.
Maharashtra's COVID-19 tally is as follows: Positive cases 60,36,821, deaths 1,21,286, recoveries 57,90,113, active cases 1,22,252, total tests 4,10,42,198, tests today 2,10,866.