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Coronavirus: HP Govt Invokes National Disaster Management Act, Read All Directions Issued for Shimla

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HP Govt Directions for Coronavirus in Shimla

Shimla- So far, eight suspected cases have been reported in Himachal Pradesh, however, all of them have tested negetive, the Chief Minister Jairam Thakur today informed.  

However, in wake of the havoc that coronavirus pandemic has wrecked across the globe, Himachal Pradesh Government has invoked the National Disaster Management Act, 2005, (DM, Act.). Under this act, the Deputy Commissioner, Shimla, Amit Kashyap, under Section 34 of the National Disaster Management Act, 2005, issued several directions as precautionary measure against transmission of COVID-19, in Shimla District (HP).

Now, no Langers and Bhandaras will be held in the jurisdiction of the district till 31st March, 2020.

Dhabas, bars, food courts, restaurants, hotels, etc., have been directed to maintain proper cleanliness in their premises and provide adequate facilities for sanitizing to all the visitors/customers. The staff engaged in cooking and serving the food will have to use masks and follow guidelines for proper health hygiene as prescribed by Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, GOI

No Conferences, events, rallies, dharnas, protests, processions etc., will be organised within the territorial limits of District Shimla till 31st March, 2020.

No massage centres, spas, swimming pool, sauna, gymnasium etc. will operate in the district till 31st March, 2020.

The MD, HRTC, Director Transport and MD, HPTDC have been directed to ensure that all the public and private buses and taxis operating in the District are sanitised with the prescribed disinfectants at regular intervals as prescribed by Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, GOI.

The Chief Executive Officer, HPBSM&DA, will have to ensure proper cleanliness and facilities for sanitization at all the bus stands in the district. All these officers will have to ensure and organise necessary briefings and sensitisation of the drivers, conductors and cleaners, through their staff and necessary advisory will be displayed at the Bus Stands and inside the Buses and taxis.

Director, Urban Development and Commissioner, Municipal Corporation Shimla will have to ensure that public places particularly the bus/taxi, sabzi mandis, railway stations, marked areas etc. in the District will be sanitized with the prescribed disinfectant. They have been directed to ensure and organise necessary briefings and sensitisation of their staff. The sweepers/sanitary staff should be provided the PPEs, Gloves, Caps, Masks, Boots etc. to be used by them while working. Garbage would be collected from the households on day to day basis and the same would be disposed of in a proper manner.

The Commissioner, MC Shimla, have been asked to remove all unauthorized fruits/vegetables vendors and rehri walas to avoid congestion on the roads and streets so as to enable pedestrians to have safe distance between each other.

Further, the Director, Tourism, have been directed to ensure that proper precautionary measures are taken in all the hotels, home stay units and other tourism units including proper cleanliness and availability of sanitizers.

All the tourists coming from abroad will have to furnish their information/particulars complete in all respects on the prescribed self-declaration formats, already made available at the hotels, home stay units etc. The details will have to be conveyed to the concerned medical authorities immediately.

All the heads of educational institutions including HPU and other Private Universities will have to ensure to furnish details of all the foreign students, as well as, Indian students having visited foreign countries, who have returned during last one month, to the Chief Medical Officer, Shimla and District Surveillance Officer Shimla.

The Director, Health Services has been directed to take all necessary steps regarding training of health officials /surveillance personnel and providing necessary facilities /equipments /medicines etc. for prevention and control of COVID-19, well in time.

Further, Director, Shimla Airport has been directed to provide all necessary co-ordination and support to the health official’s team deployed at the airport for the purpose of screening of passengers de-boarding at the Airport. Director, Shimla Airport, will have to ensure cleaning of entire airport premises with the prescribed disinfectant at such regular intervals

It has been made mandatory for all the banks to ensure proper cleanliness and availability of adequate sanitizers in the Banks for the customers. The banks have been asked to sanitize ATMs as well.

The Superintendent of Police, Shimla, has been directed to ensure that large congregations are not allowed to gather, in a closed group, at any place within the jurisdiction of District Shimla except at bus stands, railway stations, and airport, where passengers are boarding and de-boarding for their respective destination.

All the shopkeepers, wholesalers, restaurant owners, fruit/ vegetables vendors have been directed to take measures for proper cleanliness in and around their shops/premises. They will have to ensure that buyers are allowed to stay inside the shops as per the space available, without any congestion. The Beopar Mandals are also asked to take steps to educate them and implement the directions being given for maintaining cleanliness.

Further, the public at large has also been informed that section 51 of the Disaster Management Act has provisions for penalties in case a person obstructs any officer or employee in discharge of his duties or refuses to comply with any direction given under this Act. Any violation of the above directions will, therefore, lead to prosecution under section 51 of the Disaster Management Act, 2005, the notification said.

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CM Jairam Thakur Tests Positive for COVID-19, Quarantined

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HImachal Pradesh CM Tests Positive for COVID-19

Shimla-Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh, Jairam Thakur, have tested positive for COVID-19 and has been quarantined at his official residence. The report was confirmed by the Chief Minister through a tweet in which he informed that he was under quarantine at his residence after coming into contact with a COVID-19 positive person. On the appearance of symptoms, he got himself tested and the report was found to be positive, he informed.

According to the initial report, the Chief Minister had come in contact with some COVID-19 positive persons in Manali. MLA of Banjar, Surinder Shourie, who was positive for COVID-19 had participated in the event organized on the occasion of the inauguration of Rohtang Tunnel, had also tested positive. Shourie had spent the entire day with the Chief Minister, reports said.

His private secretary had also tested positive, and there are chances that the Chief Minister might have contracted the infection from him. However, there is no certainty regarding the contact who infected the Chief Minister.

Other than Chief Minister, three Cabinet ministers – Urban Development Minister Suresh Bharadwaj, Power Minister Sukh Ram Chaudhary, Jalshakti Minister Mahender Singh- have tested positive so far.  Over ten MLAs have already tested positive and some of them have recovered too.

Meanwhile, despite community spread, the testing and tracing seem to have fallen and the fatality rate has witnessed a steep rise. Till 12 pm today, the COVID-19 death tally for the state was 245, and the total number of cases registered was 17414. But these are official statistics and these numbers are likely to be much higher. 

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Himachal: COVID-19 Kills 59 in 9 Days, Govt Still Clueless About Actual Number of Cases

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Himachal PRadesh Jairam Thakur

Shimla-COVID-19 continue to wreak havoc in Himachal Pradesh as the death tally spirals upward rapidly. Currently, 240 people have lost their lives due to COVID-19. Fifty nine of these deaths have been reported during the last nine days of October month, which is quite alarming. But contrary to that, the attitude of the state government, as well as, the public is becoming more casual. The SOPs issued by the government are hardly being followed anywhere. The fact that with the community spread, the cases of COVID-19 are falling in the official information released by the state Health Department.

On October 9, the Department traced only 199 cases but reported seven deaths. The total number of active cases was cited to be 2856. The deceased included three females and four males aged between 49 -75 years. View details of the deceased in the below-given table:

Shimla-covid-19 deaths in himachal pradesh

The total number of cases, as per the official statistics, had reached 16977 till yesterday evening (9 PM). But these are official statistics and the real number is likely to be much higher due to a community spread. Similarly, the actual number of COVID-19 deaths could be higher than the official statistics. Despite it, the state government is reluctant to release any projection regarding the real numbers. No statements have been issued regarding the current situation and strategy to combat the rising fatality rate. Rather, the state appears to be refraining from bringing up the matter.

The oppositions, HP Congress and CPI (M), are targeting the government over its failure to combat the spread of COVID-19. However, this opposition is quite feeble and hasn’t resulted in any reforms in the attitude of the government.

In a statement to media, Sanjay Chauhan, former Mayor of Shimla and a senior CPI (M) leader, said that the rise in fatalities is the result of the government’s lackadaisical attitude. The suicide committed by a positive patient at the DDU COVID-19 hospital is evidence of it, he said. He said this approach has endangered health lives of ministers, officials, and the staff at their offices. Further, he said, health staff, paramedical staff, and police staff are getting infected, and even losing lives due to the government’s unpreparedness.  The government had even compromised the safety of the Prime Minister and Education Minister by violating norms set regarding COVID-19, he said.

HP Congress chief, Kuldeep Rathor also expressed shock over the presence of COVID-19 positive MLA of Banjar, Surender Shourie, in the event organized for the PM. He alleged that by violating all norms, the MLA concealed information regarding his COVID-19 positive status and did not quarantine himself, which reflects the state government’s attitude toward management of the corona pandemic. He had demanded registration of an FIR against Shourie and action against erring officials.

Sanjay Chauhan, further said that the government did not prepare itself to combat the pandemic the way it was expected to. The people of the state had followed the lockdown and sacrificed their livelihood with a hope that the government would prepare itself during this period to combat the spread and to strengthen the health infrastructure and services. But instead, the government indulged itself in making people clap and beat ‘thalis’.  The Chief Minister adopted and preached unscientific practices like performing a ‘havan’.  Despite a steep rise in fatalities, the government is still not serious about the situation, he said. 

He said the CPI (M) demands that the government starts working on war footing to prepare a strategy by involving health experts, strengthening the health services by recruiting doctors, para-medical and other staff, and constitute a task force to deal with the situation. The government should work diligently on following the norms set for prevention from COVID-19, he added.  

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Shocker for Himachal as Ex-CBI Chief & Governor Ashwani Kumar Found Dead at His Shimla Residence

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Himachal IPS Officer Ashwani Kumar found deat in shimla

Shimla-Ashwani Kumar – 1973 IPS officer from Himachal Pradesh cadre who had served as the Director-General of HP Police (2006-2008) and CBI chief (August 2008 to November 2010), and was later appointed the Governor of Nagaland in 2013-was found dead at his residence in Shimla on Wednesday evening. The news came as a shocker as Kumar was considered as one of India’s finest and honest officers.

Superintendent of Police, Shimla, Mohit Chawala, in statement to news agencies, confirmed the report. According to the initial report, he reportedly hanged himself and ended his life. However, no formal statement was issued regarding the suicide. According to the police, a suicide note was also recovered from the spot. However, the note was yet to be verified.

Kumar was a well known name as he had dealt with famous cases including that of Arushi Talwar murder and fake encounter of Sohrabuddin Sheikh in which current Home Minister Amit Shah was arrested in 2010.

He was one of the first appointees made to resign from the post of Governor, Nagaland, as soon as the current ruling party came into power in 2014. He also remained Governor of Manipur for a short period of time. After his retirement, Kumar was serving as the Vice-Chancellor of a private university in Shimla.

The officials who have served under Aswani Kumar have expressed shock over his demise in such a manner. 

Director-General of Police, Sanjay Kundu, and a team of medical staff was rushed to the spot. More details are awaited as the district police have not issued any formal statement regarding the incident.

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