Shillong: Meghalaya on Friday recorded 42 fresh COVID-19, the highest daily spike this year, pushing the number of active cases up to 167.
With the sudden spurt of COVID-19 cases, the Meghalaya government has tightened COVID-19 protocols in the State, even as shops, restaurants and bars would be closed at 9 pm.
The State government has also increased the penalty, from Rs. 500 to Rs. 100, against those who don’t wear masks in public places.
However, the government has not taken a decision on closure of schools and colleges and left in on school authorities to decide on it for the time being.
“All entrants into the State, baring those from the northeast, would have to produce a RT-PCR or CBNAAT or TruNat negative certificate or would be tested at the entry point on a payment basis,” the notification issued by the Chief Secretary M.S.Rao said.
“Day trippers from the northeast would be tested using RAT. Testing and checking at the entry points would be strictly enforced. Bus and tourist taxi drivers would be tested on a regular basis (RAT) at the Polo grounds in Shillong,” the notification noted.
Rao said attendance in congregation would be brought down to 50 percent after the autonomous district council elections in Garo Hills.
Director Health Services (MI), Dr. Aman Wat said the number of active cases in the State shot up to 167, even as six more recoveries from the viral infection were also reported from the East Khasi Hills district taking the number of recovered cases in the State to 13, 889.
He said the new COVID-19 cases detected on Friday included 34 in East Khasi Hills district , three in West Garo Hills district , two each in Ri-Bhoi district and West Jaintia Hills district and one in East Jaintia Hills district.
With 118 active COVID-19 cases, the East Khasi Hills, which includes State capital Shillong is the most affected district followed by West Garo Hills with 27 active cases and Ri-Bhoi district with 13 cases.
Meghalaya has so far registered 14, 207 COVID-19 cases, including 151 deaths with 1.06 per cent case fatality rate.
On the other hand, 1, 00, 930 persons from outside have entered the State since the onset of the pandemic till date, official data reflected, even as there were two containment zones, where positive cases have been detected and contract tracing was on.
Moreover, 22, 550 health care workers were vaccinated with the first dose of Covishield, and 15, 759 health care workers received the second dose, while 33, 181 frontline workers were administered with the first dose of the vaccine and 20, 605 frontline workers got the second shot, even as 46, 157 persons from among the general public were inoculated with the first dose and 3,054 received the second dose of the vaccine against Covid-19 across the State.
The Chief Secretary has also directed that the Corona Care Centres at Shillong, Tura, Nongpoh, Jowai, Resubelpara, Khliehriat be activated and contractual health care workers required for testing and treatment are to be retained for another three months.
The government has also laid emphasis on the ongoing vaccination drive and urged private health institutions to ramp up vaccination and stated that timing on the vaccination would be relooked at the government facilities.