GUWAHATI: Assam registered 1,202 new COVID-19 cases on Saturday, its highest single-day spike in the number of infections so far, taking the tally in the state to over 11,000, Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said.
Of the new cases, 777 were reported from Guwahati city alone.
"In the biggest spike ever, Assam on July four reported 1202 cases, 777 of these from Guwahati city alone. Time for all of us to be vigilant," the minister tweeted.
Of the 11,001 cases, 4,657 are active, 6,327 have recovered, 14 have died and three have migrated out of the state, he said.
Meanwhile, the state government has given certain relaxations in the 14-day complete lockdown in Kamrup (Metro) district, under which Guwahati city falls, by allowing grocery shops to open on alternate days for two days from June 5.
Sarma on Saturday donned a PPE kit to visit a COVID-19 ICU ward at the Guwahati Medical College Hospital to inquire about the health of critical patients.
He said the doctors were taking admirable care of the patients.
"To enquire health of patients I went to #COVID19 Ward ICU at GMCH, after putting on PPE kit. Doctors are taking admirable care of patients including providing dialysis etc. Patients say they feel enormously protected. Such dedication can be for nothing else but for humanity," the minister tweeted.
He also visited the newly inaugurated COVID Care hospital at Khanapara field, Guwahati, to review treatment facilities and interact with patients admitted there.
Sarma said he advised the doctors to maintain a constant vigil and take proper precautions and care.
Meanwhile, the Raj Bhawan campus and its surrounding areas in Guwahati City were sealed and declared a containment zone two persons of the Governor's Office tested COVID-19 positive, an official said.
Assam Governor Jagadish Mukhi, his wife Prem Mukhi and 176 employees, including security personnel deployed at the Raj Bhavan and their family members, were tested on July 1 after two personal security officers had tested COVID-19 positive earlier.
Among those tested on July 1, two staff members were found to be positive while the results of the others, including that of the governor and his wife, are awaited.
The state has so far tested 4,49,629 samples for the disease.
At present, 13,040 people are in institutional quarantine in Assam, while 1,28,247 are in home-quarantine, a state government bulletin said.
The Assam government has allowed certain relaxations during the ongoing lockdown in Kamrup (Metro) district, under which Guwahati city falls, from July five to 12, Chief Secretary Kumar Sanjay Krishna said on Saturday.
A complete lockdown has been imposed in the district for 14 days since June 28 following a surge in the number of COVID-19 cases in Guwahati city.
Guwahati city has reported 2,114 COVID-19 cases.
According to the relaxations, grocery shops are allowed to operate between 11 am and 4 pm on July six and eight with the deputy commissioner issuing requisite directives to ensure only 20 per cent of all shops are allowed to open on any day, he said in an order issued on Saturday.
Shopkeepers and customers shall have to wear masks, hand gloves and maintain social distancing and the responsibility of maintenance of social distancing will be on the shopowners and failure to do so will be viewed very seriously and may entail summary closure of defaulting shops.
The wholesalers of grocery items are allowed to replenish stocks of retailers on July five and seven between 3 pm and 6 pm but no retail sale will be allowed during this period, he said.
Activities relating to essential items supply from and to Food Corporation of India (FCI) establishments shall be allowed to operate but it will ensure that social distancing is maintained while loading/unloading of goods and that vehicles carrying goods to other districts proceed to destinations without any stoppage inside (Kamrup Metro) district.
House to house sale of fruits and vegetables will be allowed between 8 am and 2 pm on Monday and Wednesday but no roadside vending of fruit, vegetable, fish and other commodities will be allowed.
Activities related to wholesale distribution of medicines and medical equipment shall be allowed between 10 am and 3 pm on Monday and Wednesday.
Veterinary clinics, veterinary medicine shops are allowed to operate on all days between 10 am and 4 pm while feed shops are allowed to operate on Monday and Wednesday.
E-commerce distribution activities are allowed between 11 am and 4 pm on July 10 only.
Only 10 per cent of post offices and Life Insurance Corporation offices are allowed to operate with only 10 per cent staff.
All other restrictions imposed by the previous order on June 26 announcing the lockdown shall remain in place, the order stated.(THE NEW INDIAN EXPRESS)