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With a growing number of Covid-19 cases in Maharashtra's Amravati district, the government has imposed a week-long night curfew to check the fresh spike in the region.

Speaking to news agency ANI, Amravati District Collector Shailesh Naval said, "A curfew will be imposed in Amravati Municipal Corporation and Achalpur Municipal Council limits from 8 pm on 22 February to 6 am on 1 March."

During this period, only essentials shops will remain open from 8 am to 3 pm, he added.

Earlier, it was suspected that the new Covid-19 strains may have led to the spike in cases in Maharashtra.

On Thursday, an official had said that researchers had found two new mutations in coronavirus samples from Amravati and Yavatmal districts, but no foreign strain of the virus was found.

What's allowed, what's not

Naval has also said that educational offices, non-teaching staff, research staff and scientists will be permitted for e-information, evaluation of answer sheets and result declaration work only.

Restrictions on the number of passengers in different types of vehicles have been put in place, while inter-district bus transport will operate at 50% capacity, that too with passengers compulsorily maintaining physical distancing and wearing masks, he added.

"All concessions given under the 'Mission Begin Again' stand cancelled till 8 am of 1 March," the Amravati District Collector said.

Industries that have been given permission earlier will continue operations, while government offices and banks will work with 15% staff or a minimum of 15 persons, minister Yashomati Thakur has said.

Cinema houses, gyms, swimming pools, parks will also remain closed and gatherings for entertainment, educational, cultural, religious purposes, etc will not be permitted.

However, hotels and restaurants will sell only parcels while goods transport will continue unrestricted during the 22 February-1 March lockdown.

Apart from the week-long lockdown in Amravati, certain curbs will be in place in four other districts of the Amravati division -- Akola, Washim, Buldhana and Yavatmal- with a view to control the spread of the killer virus.

Amravati has reported 7,470 cases of coronavirus and 43 deaths since 1 February, including a record single-day addition of 727 cases on Saturday.

The caseload increased by 709 infections on Sunday, after which Divisional Commissioner Piyush Singh announced certain restrictions in Amravati, Akola, Washim, Buldhana and Yavatmal, he said.

With agency inputs

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