SHILLONG, April 9: The Meghalaya Government has tightened the COVID-19 protocols in the State following the latest surge in virus cases across the country.
A State Government notification issued today stated that all entrants into Meghalaya, baring those from the North East, will have to produce RT-PCR, CBNAAT or TrueNat negative certificates or undergo tests on payment of fees at the entry points.
Day trippers from the North East will be put to rapid antigen tests (RATs). “Testing and checking at the entry points will be strictly enforced,” the notification issued by Meghalaya Chief Secretary MS Rao said.
Bus and tourist taxi drivers will undergo RATs on a regular basis at the Polo Grounds and shops, restaurants and bars will have to be closed at 9 pm, the order added. Attendance in congregations will be brought down to 50 per cent after the autonomous district council elections in the Garo Hills.
The Chief Secretary has also directed that the Corona Care Centres at Shillong, Tura, Nongpoh, Jowai, Resubelpara and Khliehriat should be activated and contractual health care workers have to be retained for another three months.
Meanwhile, the State Government has also increased the penalty from Rs 500 to Rs 1,000, against those who do not wear face masks at public places. However, no decision has been taken on closure of schools and colleges yet. As of now, the Government has left it to the school and college authorities to decide on the matter.
The notification also laid emphasis on the ongoing vaccination drive and urged private health institutions to ramp it up. The timing of vaccination at government facilities will be relooked, it added.