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Extra police force to ensure strict restrictions in Kashmir Sunday

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3611 persons under observation in J&K, 4 test positive

Srinagar: Police today said curfew-like restrictions on the movement and assembly of people will be imposed in Kashmir as part of the Prime Minister’s appeal to observe ‘Janta curfew’ on Sunday to contain the coronavirus outbreak.

Inspector General of Police (IGP), Kashmir, Vijay Kumar said extra police force will be deployed in the Valley to ensure that strict restrictions are imposed.

He appealed to people to cooperate with the police and other security forces.

“It may be ‘Janta curfew’ by name, but the history of Kashmir is such that whatever the situation is, the restrictions cannot be imposed without the police or security forces enforcing them,” he told reporters at a press conference.

He said the motive of the curfew is to break the chain of the spread of the novel coronavirus.

When asked whether the restrictions would continue on Monday, the IGP said that would be communicated to the people as and when required.

Kumar also said that bulk SMS services would be started Saturday evening to allow the spread of awareness messages to the people through the medium.

Divisional Commissioner Kashmir Pandurang K Pole appealed to the people to comply with the curfew call.

He said the government is alert and prepared to contain the spread of the virus.

Pole said Kashmir has two facilities to check for coronavirus and samples were being collected at five locations in the Valley.

Meanwhile, the government today informed that 3611 travellers and persons in contact with the suspected cases have been put under surveillance and so far only four cases have tested positive in Jammu and Kashmir.

According to the daily media bulletin on novel coronavirus (COVID-19), 2557 persons have been kept under home quarantine while as 50 are in hospital quarantine.

Persons who are under home surveillance stand at 584 while as 420 persons have completed their 28-day surveillance period.

The bulletin further said that 213 samples have been sent for testing of which 205 tested as negative and only four cases have tested positive so far, while as four reports are awaited till March 21, 2020.

Meanwhile, a 24×7 toll-free national helpline number 1075 has been activated for support, guidance, and response to health related queries on novel coronavirus disease. The government of Jammu and Kashmir has also set up helpline numbers in this regard: 0191-2549676 (UT level Cell for J&K), 0191-2520982 (Jammu division), 0194-2440283 and 0194-2430581 (Kashmir division).

The government has directed that home quarantine is mandatory for anybody having travel history to coronavirus affected countries/areas in order to contain the spread of the disease. All the travellers who have arrived from Covid-19 affected countries/areas and have not declared their travel history so far have been appealed to necessarily report to local health authorities/Covid helpline and undergo self-imposed home quarantine for a period of 14 days from the date of their arrival.

The public at large has been urged to extend full co-operation to the call of ‘Janta curfew’ given by the Prime Minister tomorrow from 7:00 AM to 9:00 PM.

Government has also urged the general public to maintain social distancing as it is the key to stop and prevent the spread of Covid-19 from those who are infected.

“The intervention includes remaining out of crowded settings, avoiding mass gatherings, and maintaining distance (approximately 6 feet or 2 meters) from others when possible,” the government advisory said.

The government has appealed people to not panic and take care of health and protect others.

“Public in general is advised to avoid unnecessary travel and use of public transport. Avoid unnecessary travel and use of public transport; avoid crowded places and large gatherings, do not spit in public. People must take basic precautions for personal hygiene; frequent hand washing with soap and observing coughing and sneezing etiquettes,” the advisory added.

The advisory also calls upon the general public to strictly follow the advisories issued by the government from time to time and rely only on the information released by the government through the daily media bulletin to print and electronic media.

People have one again been advised to refrain from spreading rumours and pay no heed to them at the same time.

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