Omicron effect: Govt offices to remain shut in Himachal on weekends

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The Himachal Pradesh government on Sunday announced more curbs in view of rising cases of coronavirus disease, including a ban on all social and religious gatherings in the state till January 24. The disaster management cell of the state revenue department issued an order directing all government offices to remain closed on weekends, i.e Saturday and Sunday, and to operate at 50 per cent attendance from Monday to Friday.

The offices dealing with emergencies or essential services such as health, police, fire, banks, electricity, water and sanitation, public transport, telecom, will be exempted from the restrictions. The high court of Himachal Pradesh will issue separate orders with respect to the court and all other judicial offices on any Covid-related restrictions. All social and religious gatherings have been completely banned across the state.

“Other gatherings/congregations like academic sports/entertainment/cultural/political are permitted up to 50 per cent of the capacity, subject to maximum of 100 persons in indoor built up/covered areas (whichever is lower) and in open spaces/outdoor areas permitted up to 50% of the capacity, subject to 300 persons (whichever is lower),” the order said.

“Prior information of gatherings shall be given to the District/Sub Divisional Administration and local administration can impose additional conditions upon the organizers, as deemed fit, in context of local COVID situation,” it added.

There will also be a total ban on langar, community kitchens, and dhaams across Himachal Pradesh. The district magistrates have been authorised to take a decision on fixing the timings of the shops and markets or staggering schedule for opening and closing. 

The order will remain in force from 6am on January 10 to 6am on January 24.

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