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The ministry of information and broadcasting has issued an advisory to all private television channels, urging them to spread greater awareness around covid-appropriate behaviour and vaccination of eligible persons.

The advisory cited the meeting held under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi earlier this week to review the emerging situation, where it was decided to focus on a five-fold strategy of testing, tracing, treatment, covid appropriate behaviour and vaccination. The ministry has emphasized on the role played by private TV channels in spreading this message in public interest, highlighting the theme of ‘Dawai Bhi Kadai Bhi’ (medication as well as caution).

The second wave of the covid-19 pandemic is raging in India with over 96,982 new cases being registered in the last 24 hours. Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Delhi, Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat account for 80.04% of all new cases. The fresh surge in infections in several states has prompted stricter restrictions on malls, bars, restaurants and non-essential shops in Maharashtra which have been ordered to remain shut till April 30. The Delhi government on Thursday too announced the implementation of a night curfew in the capital from 10 pm to 5 am following a spike in the city’s covid-19 positivity rate over the last few weeks. The curfew will be in place till the end of April, the government said in an order on 6 April.

These restrictions will impact the businesses of non-essential services such as restaurants, bars, malls and theatres that were limping back to normalcy after a tough year. Businesses that provide services such as travel, dining, shopping, salons and movies, and require contact or face-to-face interactions, are bracing for another long summer of struggle, just as they thought they had finally emerged from the economic hardship of the past 12 months.

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