NEW DELHI: The Centre on Tuesday asked states and Union Territories to ensure that people taking part in mass gatherings and pilgrimages are asymptomatic and preferably fully vaccinated against Covid-19.
"All states/UTs, where such mass gatherings/yatras are proposed to be held should widely publicize that all individuals planning to participate in such gatherings/events are asymptomatic and preferably fully vaccinated against Covid-19," Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan in a letter to the states and UTs.
He said if needed, a special drive for primary vaccination and precaution dose administration to all eligible people may be taken by the administration at least a fortnight in advance for those planning to join. Further adequate publicity and arrangement for testing (RTPCR & RAT) shall be done across multiple locations, he added.
While the trajectory of Covid-19 cases has declined significantly from levels that were observed in the earlier part of this year, a few states and UTs across the country are witnessing a sustained upswing in the cases currently, he said in the letter.
The Centre has underlined the need to enhance focus on the five-fold strategy of test-track-treat-vaccination and adherence to Covid-19 appropriate behaviour.
"During many such events/yatras, lakhs of individuals undertake intra-and inter-state journeys spanning hundreds of kilometres with halting points arranged by volunteers and community-based social/religious organizations. Such congregations may potentially facilitate the transmission of infectious diseases, including Covid-19," Bhushan said.
The Centre has said that in the events like religious yatras, where en-route congregation points are expected, state governments concerned shall identify major routes expected to be taken by individuals and organize requisite health facilities on these routes. (IANS)
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