Schools up to Class VIII closed, offices to function with 50% staff: Bihar imposes COVID-19 curbs


Patna: In 24 hours while Bihar’s single day infections tally shot up two-and-a-half times to 893, forcing the Nitish Kumar government to order night curfew, other restrictions which will come into effect from Thursday.

According to a notification issued by the state’s home ministry, the curfew hours will be from 10 PM to 5 AM and, along with other curbs, shall remain in force till January 21. Schools shall remain closed for up to Class VIII though online teaching will be allowed and offices, government as well as private, shall be permitted to function with not more than 50 per cent attendance.

The measures spelled out in the notification were adopted after a high level meeting of the Covid crisis management group chaired by the Chief Minister in the evening. Other curbs include closure of gyms, cinema halls, swimming pools and stadiums and not more than 50 per cent occupancy for restaurants.

The state is now left with an active caseload of 2,222, a nearly 70 times rise since a month ago. Patna, where nearly 100 doctors are among those to have tested positive in the last few days, has 1,250 active cases. Gaya, which reported 99 fresh cases and has 460 active cases, is the second worst hit district. There has, however, been no Covid related fatality for about a week. Testing rate has been cranked up in view of the recent spike. As many as 1,44,675 samples were tested in the last 24 hours. So far there has been only one confirmed Omicron case in the state where altogether 7,28,766 people have caught the contagion and 7,14,447 have recovered.

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