UPDATED: April 1, 2021 12:36 IST
The Rajasthan government led by Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot has announced stricter Covid-19 guidelines with night curfew timings extended by an hour in 10 cities including Jaipur, Jodhpur, Udaipur and Bhilwara.
An order has also been issued to close markets in all cities across the state at 9 pm instead of the earlier designated time of 10 pm.
However, it is the politicians who are violating the Covid safety rules.
With three assembly by-polls scheduled to be held in April, leaders from across parties have been holding huge election meetings and addressing rallies in Rajasthan’s Bhilwara, Churu and Rajsamand – making them possible breeding grounds for the Coronavirus.
On March 30, the likes of Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, Rajasthan’s Congress in-charge Ajay Maken, state Congress President Govind Singh Dotasra, Sachin Pilot, BJP state president Satish Poonia, BJP national General Secretary Arun Singh, Leader of Opposition in Rajasthan Assembly Gulab Chand Kataria and several other leaders were seen addressing or being a part of large election-related gatherings.
Several senior netas, across parties, campaigned and were present during the filing of nominations. Some also flouted mask-wearing rules and social distancing norms.
In one month, active Covid-19 cases in Rajasthan have increased by more than 7000.
As per the data provided by the Health Department of Rajasthan, active Covid-19 cases in the state on February 28 was 1308. By the last day of March, however, total active cases saw a spike of over 7000. The active case tally at present stands at 8663.
Covid-19 related restrictions have adversely affected commerce, trade and business in the state. They saw a massive dip in revenues owing to curtailed business timings and reduced purchasing power.
Since the scourge of the Covid-19 outbreak in the country last year, several leaders in Rajasthan have been afflicted with Covid19.
Former Rajasthan Deputy CM Sachin Pilot tested positive for Covid-19 last year. Apart from him, Rajasthan ministers Pratap Singh Khachariyawas and Udailal Anjana, Congress leader and former MP Badri Ram Jakhar and BJP MLA Kalicharan Saraf too had tested positive for Covid-19.
BJP MLA Narpat Singh Rajvi and the party’s state general secretary Madan Dilawar, Congress MLAs Ramlal Jat and Rafeek Khan and BJP MLAs Rajendra Rathore, Ashok Lahoti and Arjun Lal Jeengar were some others who tested positive for Covid-19.
Former ministers Vishvendra Singh and Ramesh Chand Meena too had tested positive for Covid-19 in 2020. Some other politicians who tested positive included Arjun Lal Jeenagar, the BJP MLA from Kapasan; Hameer Singh Bhayal, the BJP MLA from Siwana and Chandrabhan Singh Aakya, the BJP MLA from Chittorgarh.
“Have given orders to take strict steps to prevent the state from second wave of the Coronavirus infection. In the last few days there has been laxity in adherence to Covid protocol because of which Covid cases have risen sharply,” Ashok Gehlot, Chief Minister, Rajasthan, mentioned on Wednesday.