Night curfew will be imposed in Delhi from 11 pm to 5 am starting today, the city government said as the national capital reported 290 fresh cases of Covid on Sunday – a 16 per cent jump – and one related death in 24 hours. The case positivity rate has climbed to 0.5 per cent – a critical level – and could trigger the “yellow alert” if it remains there for two consecutive days.
Under the Delhi government’s four-stage Graded response Action Plan (GRAP), the yellow alert will lead to a host of additional curbs. The GRAP was approved by the Delhi Disaster Management Authority in July in anticipation of a third wave of Covid and aims to bring in imposition and lifting of restrictions depending on the situation.
Most activities that were resumed in phases as the second wave waned will come to a grinding halt if the alert is sounded. The operational timings of shops and malls selling non-essential goods and services will be restrained. They will be allowed to be open from 10 am to 8 pm under the odd-even rule.
Under the yellow alert, restaurants in the city will be allowed to operate at 50 per cent capacity from 8 am to 10 pm, while bars will be allowed to remain open from 12 noon to 10 pm at 50 per cent capacity. Cinema halls and multiplexes that are currently open to the audience will be shut down. And so will be banquet halls and auditoriums. However, hotels will be allowed to remain open.
Spas, gyms, yoga institutes and entertainment parks will be shut down. Sports complexes, stadiums and swimming pools will be closed. But there will be no restrictions on organising national or international sporting events at these places. Public parks will remain open.
The yellow alert will not come in the way of salons and beauty parlours which will be allowed to operate in the city.
The Delhi Metro will run at 50 per cent seating capacity and no travellers will be allowed stand inside. Interstate buses will run at 50 per cent seating and only two passengers will be allowed in autos, e-rickshaws, taxis and cycle rickshaws.
At weddings and funerals, only 20 people will be allowed and the ban on social, political, religious, festival and entertainment-related activities will continue. Religious places will remain open but the entry of devotees will be restricted.
The yellow alert will also shut down schools, colleges, educational institutions, and coaching institutes. Private offices will be allowed to operate at 50 per cent capacity from 9 am to 5 pm.
Delhi has so far reported 14,43,352 cases of coronavirus with 25,105 related deaths. The number of active cases stands at 1,103, of which 583 patients are in home isolation.
On Saturday, Delhi’s daily caseload had seen a 38 per cent spike. The national capital has been witnessing a gradual rise in daily numbers amid a threat of the Omicron variant which has triggered an alarm globally.