The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) on Friday issued an order to extend the existing COVID-19 guidelines for surveillance, containment, and caution to remain in force up to March 31.The government further advised states and Union Territories to speed up the vaccination of the target population.
“While there has been a substantial decline in the active and new COVID-19 cases, there is a need to maintain surveillance, containment, and caution so as to fully overcome the pandemic. States/Union Territories have also been advised to speed up the vaccination of the target population so as to break the chain of transmission and overcome the pandemic,” the MHA said.
“Containment zones continue to be demarcated carefully. Prescribed containment measures are strictly being followed within these zones and Covid-appropriate behaviour is being promoted and strictly enforced,” the release said.
“The Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) prescribed in respect of various permitted activities followed scrupulously. Therefore, the focused approach on surveillance, containment and strict observance of the SOPs, as envisaged in the guidelines issued on January 27, 2021, need to be enforced strictly by states and Union Territories,” it added.
The announcement comes as India recorded 16,577 fresh Covid-19 cases on Friday. While the country’s infection tally went up to 11,063,491, a total of 12,179 fresh recoveries took the total number of people discharged to 10,750,680, according to the health ministry dashboard.
As many as 156,825 people have died in India due to the infection. The vaccination mark, meanwhile, has reached 13,472,643.