As COVID-19 cases continues to rise rapidly in Meghalaya, especially in Shillong agglomeration, the State Government has indicated that if the situation gets out of control, the Government would have no option but to impose lockdown once again. 

The State Government, during a review meeting chaired by Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad Sangma, has decided to close down tourist spots in East Khasi Hills district till April 30. 

The government has decided to shut down colleges till May 3, while non-essential shops in the city will remain closed from April 26 to May 2. 

Attendance of government employees in offices has been reduced to 33 percent. 

People coming from outside the state, RT-PCR test has been made mandatory. 

“Only those who have completed the vaccination of both the doses and who have with them the certificate are exempted,” deputy chief minister Prestone Tynsong told reporters on Wednesday after the review meeting. 

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Returnee or entrant from outside the state must go for RT-PCR test, Tynsong said. 

During the review meeting, the government discussed a number of issues in view of the increase of COVID cases. 

On Wednesday, as many as 192 new cases were reported in Meghalaya, taking the total active cases to 1,021. Three new deaths were also reported. 

“The situation is very grim and looks dangerous too. That’s why the government has taken few decisions for the interest and safety of the citizens. The increase of new positive cases shows that we are leading to a very grim situation,” Tynsong said. 

He also informed that in East Khasi Hills district, tourist spots will be closed down till 30 April. 

Also read: Nagaland COVID-19 crisis: Night curfew in Dimapur from Friday

Colleges will remain close till 3rd May, except those colleges having exam centres. 

Online classes will continue and teachers and lecturers are allowed to attend their duty in their respective colleges. 

In Shillong agglomeration, the government has also decided to close down gym, saloon, bars, cinema hall, swimming pool from April 23 to 30. 

Non essential shops in and around Shillong area will not open from April 26 to  May 2. All the details of non essential shops will be mentioned in the notification to be issued by the deputy commissioner. 

Urging all citizens to work together with the health department for the vaccination drive, Tynsong said, “we have to go aggressively, and we need to get ourselves vaccinated. The second wave is very dangerous and that’s why we have taken these decisions to send a message to the people that you cannot take COVID lightly. We need to take care of ourselves and adhere to the protocols. The spread is so much and we request the people of the state to take care and follow the protocols.”  

On people not adhering to protocols unlike last year, Tynsong admitted that people seemed to not fear of COVID while urging the citizens to help the government by helping themselves. 

Also read: COVID-19 virus floats in air longer than we thought, says AIIMS Director

On commercial vehicles not adhering to capacity, Tynsong said that instructions have been given to the transport department to take care. 

On last year’s appeal that people should adopt the behavioral change and learn to live with the virus, Tynsong said that now things have turned upside now, as people did not take care of themselves and neglect the protocols. 

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