As COVID-19 cases rise, poll-bound Uttarakhand bans political rallies till 16 January

The Uttarakhand High Court had recently asked the Election Commission to see if poll rallies could be held virtually and if online voting was possible

Press Trust of India January 08, 2022 11:16:10 IST
As COVID-19 cases rise, poll-bound Uttarakhand bans political rallies till 16 January

Representational image. File image/Pallavi Rebbapragada

Dehradun: Political rallies, dharnas and demonstrations have been banned in poll-bound Uttarakhand till 16 January, 2022, in view of the rising coronavirus cases, according to an official order.

In fresh guidelines issued late 7 January, 2022, that come into effect from 9 January, 2022, Chief Secretary SS Sandhu said all political rallies, dharnas, demonstrations and public events like cultural gatherings etc will remain suspended in the state till 16 January, 2022.

The Uttarakhand High Court had recently asked the Election Commission to see if poll rallies could be held virtually and if online voting was possible. Assembly polls in the state are due in a few weeks and the Election Commission may announce the dates this month.

COVID cases have been constantly on the rise in Uttarakhand with single-day cases crossing 800 mark on 7 January, 2022, after several months.

Anaganwadi centres and schools upto class XII besides swimming pools and water parks will also remain closed during the period, the order said.

However, gyms, shopping malls, cinema halls, spas, saloons, entertainment parks, theatres and auditoriums will remain open during the period with 50 percent capacity.

Night curfew from 10 pm to 6 am will continue during which essential and emergency services can operate with strict adherence to COVID protocol, said the order.

COVID appropriate behaviour such as wearing of masks, maintaining social distancing and hand sanitisation in public places is compulsory.

For people coming to Uttarakhand from outside who are not vaccinated with two doses it will be mandatory to carry a negative RT-PCR test report not older than 72 hours, the order said.

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