Public Celebrations and Gatherings Disallowed During Ugadi, Holi in Karnataka

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The Karnataka government on Thursday issued an order not allowing public celebrations, gatherings or congregations during the coming festivals like Ugadi, Holi, Shab-e-Barat and Good Friday following a spike in COVID-19 cases. In an order, Chief Secretary P Ravi Kumar, who is also the State Disaster Management Authority’s State Executive Committee Chairperson has directed authorities concerned to ensure that public gatherings and congregations during the upcoming religious festivals not be allowed in public places, including parks, markets and religious places.

It has asked the Commissioner, Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP-city civic corporation), Deputy Commissioners, and authorities concerned to ensure strict compliance of the order and adequately inform and sensitise field functionaries in this regard. The order also warns of action under the Disaster Management Act, IPC and Karnataka Epidemic Diseases Act, against those violating the guidelines.

Noting that Karnataka is again under threat of COVID-19 spread, the government said it has been observed that there has been a persistent rise in coronavirus cases in the state during the last fortnight. It is anticipated that gatherings, congregations and public celebrations during the coming festivals may pose a considerable threat of spread of virus and may cause setback to the appreciable gains made in the suppression of chain of transmission of COVID-19 cases.

For the last three consecutive days, the state has been reporting over 2,000 fresh cases of coronavirus.