By LE Desk

Allahabad, April 19: With the Covid-19 curve showing no signs of easing in Uttar Pradesh, the Allahabad High Court on Monday ordered a lockdown in five cities till April 26 and castigated the state government for the “present chaotic health problems”.

Noting that the surge in cases under the second wave of the infections has virtually paralysed all the medical infrastructure of Uttar Pradesh, the High Court ordered the lockdown in Prayagraj, Lucknow, Varanasi, Kanpur and Gorakhpur, The Indian Express reported.

“Those in the helm of affairs of governance are to be blamed for the present chaotic health problems,” the HC said as it imposed the restrictions aimed at containing the spread of the coronavirus in the state.

The Court observed that though putting lockdown to public activities was a matter purely in the nature of policy decision by the concerned government, the court had to step in since the UP government had not yet chalked out any concrete plan to tackle the situation.

In its order, the court said, “If we have not imposed a lockdown it does not mean that we do not believe in it. We are still of the view that if we want to break the chain a lockdown for a duration of at least two weeks is a must.” 

“It is a shame that while the Government knew of the magnitude of the second wave it never planned things in advance,” said the two-judge bench.

The court also directed the state to “consider imposition of a complete lockdown in the entire state for at least a period of two weeks”. 

“This would not only break the chain of the spread of the virus but would also give respite to health workers,” it opined.

Reacting to the order, the state government stated there will be no ‘complete lockdown’ in the cities as of now, according to The Indian Express.

On Sunday, UP registered the highest single-day rise in Covid cases (30,596) as well as fatality count, with the disease claiming 129 more lives.

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