COVID crisis: Srinagar Mayor requests J&K LG to shut tourist sites, disallow congregational prayers
Kashmiri Muslims offer prayers while maintaining social distance as precaution against COVID19 on the second Friday of Ramadan, at Dastgeer Sahab Shrine in Khanyar in Srinagar.
Srinagar: Amid worsening COVID-19 crisis, Srinagar Mayor, Junaid Azim Mattu has written to LG Manoj Sinha recommending disallowing of all congregational prayers and religious gatherings in the city amid other measures to contain the spread of the virus.
In a letter addressed to the LG, Junaid has said that as the second wave of COVID mounts an unprecedented challenge in the entire country including Jammu and Kashmir, he wants to reaffirm the full cooperation of Srinagar Municipal Corporation to the Administration in taking every possible measure to contain the spread of COVID and saving precious lives.
“While the Administration is taking every required step and is monitoring the evolving situation closely, I want to request for the following measures to be implemented in Srinagar City limits to help contain COVID optimally and effectively,” he writes.
To contain Covid-19, Junaid recommended to disallow all congregational prayers and religious gatherings at places of worship in Srinagar and seek community consensus and involvement in mounting this challenge together.
“Shutting down of all Tourist Gardens, monuments and tourist sites. Making a negative RT-PCR test report mandatory for anyone entering Srinagar by air or through the road routes,” the letter reads.
It suggests sshutting down OPDs at Government and Private Hospitals to reduce the strain on healthcare infrastructure, better isolate frontline health workers and allow them a better and safer atmosphere in their valiant fight against COVID.
“All emergent cases can be treated at Emergency Wings and designated COVID centers at the hospitals.”
“Ceasing all elective, non-emergent procedures and surgeries at the hospitals till the situation improves and vaccination rates go up. Surgeries and procedures for emergent and terminal patients should be prioritised,” it reads.
It reads that a 50 percent attendance roster on rotational basis at all essential services Government and Public Offices. “A 33% attendance roster on rotational basis at all non-essential-services Government and Public Offices.”
It reads that a 33% attendance roster on rotational basis for teachers of Government and private schools (those that continue to seek presence of teachers for administrative and curriculum dissemination purposes).
“A 33% rotational regulation for vendor-markets and flea-markets in Srinagar – regulating crowds that throng these markets. The Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC) had initiated a regulation of these markets during the first wave of COVID and I’m of the firm opinion the same needs to be replicated now without any delay.”
The letter further reads that constitution of a multi-agency field task-force to enforce COVID guidelines (Mask-usage, physical-distancing and restrictions in outdoor and indoor gatherings) as issued by the State Disaster Management Authority (SDMA) with a strong law-enforcement liaison.
“Deployment of Reserve Battalions of Jammu and Kashmir Police to enforce adherence to COVID guidelines should be considered for this initiative.”
It reads that a comprehensive, multi-media and multi-pronged community awareness campaign with door-to-door initiatives to ensure maximum possible success of the COVID vaccination drive.
Mattu said that he will extend his full support and that all of his fellow Corporators across partisan lines to the Administration’s efforts to fight an unprecedented challenge in battling COVID and minimizing its spread in Srinagar and the Union Territory at large.