Public gatherings on New Year banned in the Nilgiris

All gatherings in public places in the Nilgiris from Friday to Sunday for New Year celebrations are being banned, said District Collector S.P. Amrith on Friday.

Speaking to reporters, Mr. Amrith said that the number of visitors to the district had increased in view of the New Year and also for the weekend. He said that the government had issued instructions prohibiting gatherings in hotels, resorts, clubs, recreational spaces, tourist spots and public places due to the spread of the Omicron variant of the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

He said that the steps were being taken to discourage large gatherings to minimise the chance of risk of spread of COVID-19. Teams from the Health Department have also been deputed at all the border check-posts and random samples are being collected and people are being tested. Officials were also checking whether visitors have COVID-19 vaccination certificates, failing which, they are being turned back at the check-posts.

Resorts, hotels and guest houses have been issued with standard operating procedures, to ensure that guests and staff wear masks, use hand sanitisers and maintain personal distancing, while these spaces will also be closed after 11 p.m., he said.

Teams of Revenue Department staff have been formed to ensure compliance among the public, with strict vigil being kept to ensure COVID appropriate behaviour and to also prevent littering.

District superintendent of police Ashish Rawat, who was also present at the meeting with the press, will be in-charge of police personnel who will keep tab on movement of vehicles and prevent drunk and reckless driving on New Year’s eve and during the weekend.

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