Farmer carry vegetables to a wholesale market after arriving at a Ganga ghat by a boat during the complete lockdown following surge in COVID-19 cases, in Patna. PTI photo
Patna has been placed under total lockdown for a week from Friday onwards after COVID-19 cases increased in the state.
The notification was issued by the district administration after 749 positive cases were reported on Wednesday. Officials said that other districts of Bihar mainly the urban areas may also see similar lockdown if conditions don’t improve.
As per the latest data released by the state health department, the number of corona cases in the state has surged to 13274 after 10 deaths and 749 positive COVID cases were reported on Wednesday.
As of now, there are about 4179 active cases and the death toll has reached 100 in the state.
"There is an alarming surge in COVID-19 cases in the district of Patna in the last three weeks wherein the positivity rate has also been considerably high. And whereas, the district administration has examined the matter in detail and is convinced that the requirement for a lockdown throughout the district is urgent to contain the further spread of the COVID-19" the order letter released by Patna district administration said.
As per the notification issued by Patna district administration all essential services like healthcare, general provision stores and media have been exempted from the lockdown.
Offices and markets along with commercial activities will be closed during the period of lockdown from Friday till July 16. Officials said that the district administration will review the situation a week later and may increase the period depending upon the situation.
Apart from Patna, the state government has also decided to impose a lockdown in Bhagalpur and Nawada. Officials said 4-day curbs have been imposed in Bhagalpur from Thursday onwards and three days in Nawada.
While the BJP welcomed the state government’s move to impose lockdown in several parts Bihar, the opposition especially the RJD blamed Bihar CM Nitish Kumar and the health department for low testing of COVID cases.
Taking a dig at Bihar CM Nitish Kumar and the state administration on Thursday Tejashwi Yadav said that "Mr Nitish Kumar slept in his comfy bungalow for 100 days, didn’t do anything in 4 months of initial lockdowns and now fragmented lockdowns are being announced in several districts which is a testament to the fact that he has failed to contain the virus".
"I challenge CM to speak on steps taken by him to contain the spread of the virus. Like I had said earlier, he expected the fire to douse on it's own which has only aggravated the situation", Tejashwi Yadav added and asked Nitish Kumar to come up with a comprehensive plan.
"Test, isolate Treat at war footing," he said.
He had earlier created a flutter in the political circle by saying that his party RJD was not in favour of assembly elections due to the mounting corona cases in Bihar.
"Time for election is not right. Does Nitish Kumar want to hold election over dead bodies?" Tejashwi Yadav recently said in Patna.
Elections to the 243- member Bihar Assembly are due in October – November this year.