Gujarat CM rules out lockdown, curfew only in Ahmedabad city

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Ahmedabad, Nov 20 (PTI) As Ahmedabad city prepares for a 57-hour-long curfew following a spike in cases, the Gujarat government on Friday ruled out a fresh statewide lockdown to contain the spread of coronavirus.

Chief Minister Vijay Rupani said his government is not mulling to impose a statewide lockdown.

Rupani said a 'weekend curfew' will be imposed from Friday night only in Ahmedabad city 'as a precautionary measure' following a sudden spike in coronavirus cases in the state's commercial hub.

'There is no question of imposing a lockdown in Gujarat at present. We have decided to implement a weekend curfew, on Saturday and Sunday, in Ahmedabad city only,' he said.

Moreover, police have been instructed to take strict action against those found roaming without face masks and violating social distancing norms, Rupani told reporters at Ambaji in Banaskantha district.

To stem the COVID-19 spread in Ahmedabad city after a spike in cases, authorities had on Thursday announced to impose a 57-hour-long curfew in municipal limits from Friday night.

The curfew in Ahmedabad city will start at 9 pm on Friday (Nov 20) and end at 6 am on Monday (Nov 23).

The Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) on Friday said 600-odd city buses operated by it will not ply during the curfew period.

During this 'complete curfew', only milk and medicine shops will remain open, the AMC had announced.

From Monday, a night curfew will come into force in the city from 9 pm to 6 am daily till further orders, said an AMC release.

Ahmedabad city has been witnessing a steady rise in coronavirus cases since the beginning of this month.

From around 140 daily cases a few months ago, the city is now witnessing over 200 COVID-19 single-day infections.

As many as 230 persons from the city were found infected with coronavirus in 24 hours ended at 5 pm on Thursday, the state health department had said.

Meanwhile, in the wake of the prevailing situation, the government has put on hold its earlier decision to open secondary schools and colleges in the state from November 23, said an official release on Thursday. PTI PJT PD RSY RSY