The Manipur government on Friday announced a total curfew in the state for 10 days from July 18 in view of the rising number of Covid-19 cases spiked by the Delta variant of the virus.

A notification said, “With the wide prevalence of the Delta variant of Covid-19 in Manipur, there is a need to take stringent measures to break the chain of transmission.”

Only those engaged in essential services such as vaccination drives, Covid-19 testing, medical services, water supply, telecom and others like air travel and agricultural activities have been kept outside the ambit of the curfew.

Manipur chief minister N Biren Singh said the decision was taken after a series of deliberation with several committees of the state formed to tackle the Covid-19 pandemic.

“We have been doing whatever we can in our capacity to control the pandemic, ranging from installation of oxygen plants to intensifying the vaccination process. However, the situation continues to deteriorate with each passing day. The number of daily positive cases is going above 1,000 and deaths above 10,” he said.

To ensure strict compliance, the chief minister said the state will be deploying all security forces at its disposal, including Assam Rifles and CRPF, in addition to state forces.

He appealed to the people to extend their full co-operation in the initiative, the only intention of which is to “save lives”.

“The prevalence rate of the Delta variant is extremely high. In the course of house-to-house testing, we detected substantial number of positive cases that could be disastrous. I earnestly appeal to the people to bear with us and stay indoors during the curfew period,” Singh said.

The celebration of the upcoming Eid festival will be relaxed from the purview of the curfew, provided strict adherence of the guidelines is ensured, added Singh.

According to the state health department, as many as 205 cases of the Delta variant have been confirmed in the state as on July 12. The state reported a record 1,039 positive cases and 14 deaths on Thursday. With this, the total number of active cases reached 8,558.
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