CHANDIGARH, September 22

Even as he expressed satisfaction at increased testing in rural areas with many Panchayats passing formal resolutions in support of the Government efforts, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Tuesday ordered strict enforcement of Covid safety protocols and strengthening of the public awareness campaigns across the state.


The Chief Minister expressed concern over the continuing violation by the people of the rules and protocols on Covid safety. The state government had no option but to open up but people have to realise their responsibility, he said during a Covid review video conference, stressing the need to bring down the Case Fatality Rate (CFR), which continues to be higher for Punjab than the national average.


Taking serious note of people continuing to not wear masks and not giving up spitting on the roads despite the critical situation in the state, Captain Amarinder directed DGP Dinkar Gupta to ensure punishment for those found violating the rules. Nobody knows how long the crisis will continue or what the disease’s side effects really are, pointed out the Chief Minister, directing the concerned departments to step up their efforts to spread public awareness about the problem.


Earlier, the DGP informed the VC that 5300 (40%) of the state’s Panchayats had passed formal resolutions backing Covid testing, as a result of which the initial resistance showed by public due to widespread disinformation campaigns had eased off.


Giving details of the number of police personnel impacted by the disease, Gupta said of the 86 cops who had died due to the infection, 18 had been reported in September, with 8 currently on ventilators. A total of 1233 cops had tested Covid positive so far, he added.


The DGP further disclosed that the police department was appointing a nodal officer to expedite disbursement of Rs 50 lakhs compensation, as announced earlier by the Chief Minister, to the families of police personnel who had lost their lives in the fight against Covid.

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