The relaxations in Covid-related curbs will be applicable to a total of 61 districts from 1 June, while 14 districts with an active coronavirus caseload of over 600 have been kept outside the purview of the order for the time being.

“The relaxations were announced in 55 districts on Sunday, which has now been increased to 61 (of the state’s 75 districts). According to latest reports, the active caseload has fallen below 600 in Sonbhadra, Deoria, Baghpat, Prayagraj, Bijnore and Moradabad, and the relaxations will be applicable in these six districts as well,” an official spokesperson was quoted as saying by PTI.

The decision was taken at a meeting chaired by UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath with senior officials.

The 14 districts where there would be no relaxation are — Meerut, Lucknow, Saharanpur, Varanasi, Ghaziabad, Gorakhpur, Muzaffarnagar, Bareilly, Gautam Buddh Nagar, Bulandshahr, Jhansi, Lakhimpur-Khiri, Jaunpur and Ghazipur.

In the remaining 61 districts, shops and markets outside the coronavirus containment zones will be allowed to remain open from 7 am to 7 pm from Monday to Friday, he said.

Eateries on highways and vendors will also be allowed to operate, according to a statement issued by the state government.

Night curfew, weekend restrictions will be in place

The night curfew will remain in place from 7 pm to 7 am and weekend restrictions or the “corona curfew” will also be in place on Saturdays and Sundays.

Instructions were issued that over the weekend, cleanliness, sanitisation and fogging campaigns will be carried out.

Shopkeepers and their employees will have to wear masks, maintain a two-yard distance with each other and customers, and ensure the arrangement of hand sanitiser. These rules will also be applicable to the customers.

While there would be full attendance for the frontline workers, for the rest of the government employees, there would be 50 per cent attendance on rotation. A COVID help desk must also be established at all offices.

The private sector has been asked to encourage the employees to work from home.

According to the statement, industrial units will stay open while vegetable markets in the densely populated areas will function in open places.

At railway stations, airports and bus stands, all Covid-related protocols have to be followed. Screening of passengers and antigen tests have to be conducted. The roadways buses have been allowed to operate within the state.

Schools, colleges and educational institutes will remain closed while teachers and other staff have been allowed to come to school for administrative work.

Not more than five devotees will be allowed inside a religious place at a time. Coaching centres, cinema halls, gymnasiums, swimming pools, clubs and shopping malls will remain closed, the statement said.

A maximum of 20 people will be allowed at a funeral procession, it added.

The government has also decided to conduct a detailed study on coronavirus mutation.

“It has been directed by the chief minister to do genome sequencing of the virus with the help of the Central Drug Research Institute (CDRI). In the future, it will help in dealing with the virus,” the spokesperson said.

Uttar Pradesh Covid update

Meanwhile, the coronavirus death toll in Uttar Pradesh rose to 20,346 on Sunday with 140 more fatalities, while 1,908 new cases pushed the infection tally to 16,90,016.

Of the new fatalities, Gorakhpur reported 15 deaths, followed by 12 each in Allahabad and Kushinagar, the state government said in the statement.

Of the new cases, Meerut reported 112 infections, while Lucknow recorded 109 cases, it said.

In the past 24 hours, as many as 6,713 Covid-19 patients have recovered, taking the overall recoveries in the state to 16,28,456.

The count of active Covid-19 cases stands at 41,214.

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