Dehradun (Uttarakhand) [India], April 19 (ANI): Amid the deteriorating COVID-19 situation in the state, the Uttarakhand government has said that the Disaster Management Act will be invoked against employees rendering medical and essential services if they go on strike.
"The Chief Minister (Tirath Singh Rawat) expect all the employees working rendering medical and essential services to discharge their work with responsibility during this time of crisis," read an official statement from Uttarkhand CMO on Sunday.
"Otherwise in the event of a strike, the employees will be terminated from the service and the process of new appointments will be started," the statement added.
Uttarakhand reported 2,630 fresh COVID-19 cases, including 1,281 cases in Dehradun and 572 cases in Haridwar, taking the total number of cases to 1,24,033.
More than 2,000 people have tested positive for Covid-19 at the Kumbh in Haridwar so far. The COVID-19 protocol including wearing of masks and social distancing was openly violated as lakhs gathered for the major Hindu pilgrimage.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday morning had appealed that the Kumbh Mela "should now only be symbolic amid the coronavirus crisis", stressing that it would give a boost to the fight against the pandemic.
In a tweet, the Prime Minister said he spoke to one of the top seers - Swami Avdheshanand Giri of Juna Akhara - over the phone and made an appeal about the religious festival that attracts millions of devotees.
"I appealed that two ''shahi snan" (royal baths) have taken place and Kumbh (participation) should now be kept symbolic. This will give a boost to the fight against this crisis," PM Modi tweeted in Hindi.
Responding to the Prime Minister's tweet, Swami Avdheshanand replied in Hindi: "We respect PM Modi's appeal. Saving lives is sacred. I request people to not gather for the ritual bath in large numbers and follow all Covid protocols."
"We have decided to gather here in minimum numbers and celebrate Kumbh Mela in a symbolic way to avoid any rush," said Mahant Sadanand from Agni Akhada on Sunday.
The duration of the Kumbh festival has been shortened to 30 days this year due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Usually, the event is held from mid-January to April. (ANI)