PTI

Lucknow, April 18

The Uttar Pradesh Government on Monday made it compulsory for people to wear a face mask in public places in capital Lucknow and six NCR districts amid a rise in Covid cases in some adjoining states, an official said.

The increase in Covid cases has had an impact on the districts falling under the national capital region (NCR). Keeping this in mind, the government has made use of masks mandatory in public places in Gautam Buddh Nagar, Ghaziabad, Hapur, Meerut, Bulandshahr, Baghpat as well as capital Lucknow, an official spokesperson said here.

Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, who issued the directive on Monday, has asked officials to identify people in these districts who have not been fully vaccinated yet and administer the jab to them on priority while getting those with Covid symptoms tested, he said.

In the last 24 hours, 65 new Covid cases have been confirmed in Gautam Buddh Nagar, 20 in Ghaziabad and 10 in Lucknow, the official said, adding that the chief minister has ordered “close monitoring” of the situation.

In view of the improving COVID-19 situation, the Uttar Pradesh government had given relaxation in wearing face mask earlier this month.

In the genome sequencing of samples of Covid positive patients in NCR, only the Omicron variant of Covid has been confirmed, the official said.

According to experts, it is possible that the number of Covid cases may rise in the coming days but the chances of patients needing hospitalisation or becoming very serious are slim. However, people should follow Covid-appropriate behaviour, the official said.

At present, the total number of active Covid cases in the state is 695. In the last 24 hours, over 83,000 tests were done of which 115 new corona cases were confirmed, he said.

During the same period, 29 people were treated and discharged from hospitals, he added.

The official pointed out that the progress of the Covid vaccination campaign in the state is “satisfactory”, but there is a need to accelerate the vaccination of children.

More than 86.34 per cent of the state’s adult population has received both doses of anti-Covid vaccine while over 94 per cent of adolescents in the 15 to 17 age group have received their first dose, he said.

The chief minister also said people should be made aware about the importance of booster dose, the official said.

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