The Mizoram government has announced a 7-day lockdown in Aizawl and ten district headquarters to break the chain of rising COVID-19 cases and local transmission cases in the state and facilitate COVID-19 testing and contact tracing.

The guidelines issued on Monday midnight did not use the word “lockdown”. However, it clarified that no residents of the Aizawl municipal area and other district headquarters should step out of their homes during the restriction period, which is now effective until 4 am on April 26.

As of April 20, Mizoram has a total of 4,995 cases. It reported 91 new cases in the last 24 hours, pushing the active case count to 437. Mizoram’s death toll stands at 12.

Public and inter-village movement or intra-state movement is allowed with permission from the concerned Village Level Task Force (VLTF) or Local Level Task Force (LLTF), the guidelines said.

There are 11 districts, including Aizawl in Mizoram.

The guidelines called for restricted vehicular movement. The existing night curfew (from 8:30 pm to 4 am) would continue to be enforced in Aizawl and other district headquarters.

Shops selling essential commodities, eateries, vegetables, flowers, meat, construction materials and spare parts in the state capital and district headquarters are allowed to open based on the arrangement made by LLTF or VLTF, it said.

Besides, filling stations, motor workshops, cold storage and warehousing, data and call centre, carpentry workshop, steel fabrication workshop, bakery, tailoring shop, weaving shops and related shops are also allowed to be open with LLTF or VLTF’s arrangement, it said.

However, the sale of vegetables and other goods are not allowed in the market place. The LLTF or VLTF must ensure that people get an uninterrupted supply of vegetables, the guidelines said.

According to the new guidelines, religious places, educational institutions, public parks, picnic spots, movie theatres, gymnasiums, community halls, restaurants, shopping complexes, malls and any other amusement resorts or places will be closed in all parts of the state during the period.

However, school board examinations, all-India level, and other recruitment exams will continue as per schedule, it said.

The number of attendees at the funeral and wedding is now fixed at 30. However, any public gathering such as a birthday party, anniversary celebration, games and sports activities, book release function and other related social gatherings are banned in all parts of the state.

Lengpui airport and inter-state borders will remain open. Returnees from other states, barring the new COVID-19 variant affected states, must undergo home isolation as self-monitoring for seven days provided they test negative through Rapid Antigen Test upon their arrival.

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After seven days, they would be tested with RT-PCR facilities, and if found negative they will not require further home isolation.

Returnees from abroad or new Covid-19 variant affected states will have to be quarantined at designated facilities.

However, if they have already stayed ten days in the country after they arrived from abroad and accordingly tested negative for Covid-19 while screening at entry points here, they will be allowed to go for seven days home isolation.

Quarantine is not mandatory for people who visit the state on a short stay (not longer than 96 hours), provided they possess a Covid-19 negative certificate, which has Specimen Referral Form (SRF) ID from ICMR recognised RT-PCR or Truenat or CBNAT labs.

The certificate should not be older than 96 hours upon arrival in the state.

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