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As novel coronavirus cases surge across Chattisgarh, its Raipur district authorities on Wednesday declared the whole district as Covid-19 containment zone from 6pm on 9th April till 6 am on 19th April.

"All the borders of the district will remain sealed during this period," said Raipur district collector S Bharathi Dasan.

Medical shops will be allowed to open as per their timings. Children appearing in exams can do so with requisite permission.

Milk and newspapers will be available in the morning from 6 am to 8 am and in the evening from 5 pm to 6.30 pm. All wine shops will be closed. Hospitals and ATMs will remain open.

"People are advised not to delay treatment for COVID19. Separate centers will be made for patients coming for check-up, requiring a ventilator, oxygen," said Chhattisgarh Home Minister Tamradhwaj Sahu.

The order comes a day after Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan on Tuesday expressed huge concerns for Chhattisgarh's deteriorating Covid-19 situations over the past few weeks.

Vardhan today held a high-level meeting with health ministers of 11 states that have been witnessing a surge in cases to review the situation there. After the meeting, he highlighted that the worst affected state is Chhattisgarh with a positivity rate of 14% and growth rate of 8%. There have been 10-fold rise in cases in the state.

Moreover, during a routine health briefing, Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan said, "Death numbers being reported in Punjab and Chhattisgarh are cause of extreme concern." He also added that of all the active cases in the country, 58% of active cases are in Maharashtra while 34% of the total deaths have been reported in the worst-hit state as well.

Highlighting the situation of Chhattisgarh in particular, the ministry further said the despite being a small state, the state reports 6% of total COVID cases and 3% of total deaths in the country.

"The condition of Chhattisgarh has deteriorated in the second wave of infections," Bhushan added.

Meanwhile, Chhattisgarh reported 9,921 new COVID-19 cases, 1,552 recoveries and 53 deaths in the last 24 hours, as per the state Health Department on Tuesday.

With this, the total cases mounted to 3,86,269 including 52,445 active cases and 3,29,408 total recoveries. However, the death toll mounted to 4,416 including the new deaths.

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