NEW DELHI, Jan. 27 : The Indian federal government on Wednesday extended COVID-19 guidelines by one month, urging people to continue wearing of face masks, maintaining hand-hygiene and social distancing. The extended guidelines, which are presently implemented till the January end, shall remain in force up to February 28. “The main focus of the guidelines is to consolidate the substantial gains that have been achieved against the spread of COVID-19 which is visible in the steady decline in number of active and new cases in the country over the last four months,” said an official statement issued by the federal Ministry of Home (Internal Security) Affairs. It emphasised that in order to fully overcome the pandemic, there is a need to maintain caution and to strictly follow the prescribed containment strategy focussed on surveillance, containment and strict observance of the guidelines that are already in place.
Local district, police and municipal authorities shall be responsible to ensure that the prescribed Containment measures are strictly followed and state governments shall ensure the accountability of the officers concerned in this regard. Persons above 65 years of age, and those with co-morbidities, pregnant women, and children below the age of 10 years are advised to take necessary precautions, the official statement said. The number of COVID-19 cases has been on a steady decline over the past few weeks. Till Wednesday morning the COVID-19 tally rose to 10,689,527, as 12,689 new cases were registered through Tuesday. According to the official data, the death toll mounted to 153,724 as 137 COVID-19 patients died on Tuesday.
There are still 176,498 active cases in the country, while 10,359,305 people have been discharged so far from hospitals after medical treatment. Last week, Wednesday was the first day in nearly seven months when the number of the active COVID-19 cases in the country fell below the 200,000-mark.(Xinhua)