Two-Day Ban On Large Gatherings In Mumbai As Omicron Cases Rise

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Mumbai bans large gatherings for 48 hours:  After three new cases of the new coronavirus variant were detected in Mumbai, the capital city of Maharashtra has implemented a ban on large gatherings for the next 48 hours. 

So far, Maharastra has recorded 17 Omicron cases out of India’s thirty- two, out of which seven were confirmed yesterday. This led to the implementation of Section 144, the order for which was issued by the Deputy Commissioner of Police (Operations).

The ban on large gatherings includes rallies, protest marches for Saturday and Sunday in Mumbai city. The DCP’s order clarified that the ban has been issued to prevent danger to human life from the new Omicron variant of COVID-19 as well as a threat to the law-and-order situation against the backdrop of violence that took place in Amravati, Malegaon and Nanded.

If anyone is seen violating this ban order they would be punished under section 188 of the Indian Penal Code which deals with disobedience to order duly promulgated by a public servant.

Suggested Reading: In Singapore 2 Infected With Omicron Despite Booster Shots

On December 4, 2021, Maharashtra had recorded its first Omicron patient. A man from Kalyan Dombivli municipal corporation area has tested positive for the new variant of COVID-19, thus becoming the first official case in the state. The man had returned from South Africa.

Seven more cases were detected Pimpri Chinchwad area of Pune, including a woman visiting her brother in Nigeria along with her two daughters, all of whom tested positive. On December 10, four more people from the Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation tested positive for the new variant, They had all been contacts of three women who had arrived from Nigeria.

World deals with Omicron scare

World Health Organisation (WHO) declared Omicron as a “Variant of Concern” on November 26, 2021, soon after it was flagged by South Africa.

The Omicron scare also led to the Maharashtra government revising its travel guidelines for Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport (CSMIA). 

Suggested Reading: Omicron May Cause Increased Reinfection, But Milder Disease: WHO

The passengers from countries like the United Kingdom, South Africa, Botswana Brazil, China, Mauritius, New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Israel are mandatorily made to undergo the RT-PCR test on their arrival to Mumbai.

Further, passengers from South Africa, Botswana, and Zimbabwe have to undergo mandatory institutional quarantine for seven days.

The schools in Mumbai were about to open from December 1, 2021, but due to the emergence of the new coronavirus variant, the schools have pushed back plans to reopen to December 15, 2021, instead.