The Assam cabinet will meet every Wednesday to monitor the COVID-19 situation in the state, the government said in a press conference.

Each cabinet minister must visit at least two-three districts which will be given to them by the Chief Minister and submit their assessment report within three days to the Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma and Health Minister Keshab Mahanta.

The Director General of Police and the Chief Secretary will address the press tomorrow at 11 am to address the COVID-situation, Mahanta said. The next course of action will be provided in the press conference, Mahanta added.

If the course of action goes beyond 15 days, then the next cabinet meet will make a special economic package to address the issues.

Assam has witnessed a huge jump in cases in the last month. On April 5, the number of active cases was only 515, following which, in a conversation with The Lallantop, Sarma had said on April 6, “The Centre might give its directives but in the context of Assam, as on date, Covid is almost non-existent. So, why this need to create panic among people?” 

However, since that statement, the conditions in Assam have changed for the worse and as of May 10, Monday, Assam recorded 77 COVID-related deaths — the highest number of fatalities in a day — since the pandemic started. 

The state recorded 5,803 cases in a day and has recorded 1,753 deaths in total. 

On May 5, the Kamrup administration had declared three wards as containment zones to control COVID-19 cases. 

On May 6, Himanta Biswa Sarma had pointed out that 55 deaths in a day was an alarming figure while visiting the Ulubari cremation ground. 

In light of the rise in COVID-19 cases, the Higher Secondary 1st year examinations, which were scheduled from May 4 and subsequently postponed until further notice, have also been cancelled. The administration has designated seven more crematoriums to dispose of bodies of coronavirus patients. 

The new grounds will complement the existing four, where the bodies of COVID-19 patients are being cremated at present, a release from the Kamrup Metropolitan district, comprising primarily Guwahati city, said.

Ulubari Electrical Crematorium, Basistha Bhootnath, Botahghuli, Jalukbari, Garigaon Kabarsthan, Jalukbari Kabarsthan and Katahbari Kabarsthan are the new COVID-19 grounds.

In light of the rising COVID-19 cases, masjid committees in Assam also decided not to have mass prayers on their premises during the upcoming Eid ul-Fitr festival due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the state government guidelines.

Clerics appealed to the faithful in their area to offer prayers at their respective home to celebrate the festival at the end of the month-long Ramadan fasting.

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