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Covid cases across the country are on the rise and there is no stop to political rallies as elections approach. Leaders from various political parties are conduction massive rallies and campaigns in the poll-bound state of Punjab.

Observing the Covid situation in Punjab, Deputy Chief Minister OP Soni, who also holds the state’s health ministry has proposed that big political rallies be banned in the state.

While advocating restrictions on political rallies, the state health minister also stated that Punjab Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi will make a decision on the matter soon.

Mr Soni, speaking at a press conference in Chandigarh, stated, "If we close schools and colleges, I believe that rallies with large crowds should be prohibited as well. However, no decision can be made until the Centre releases such guidelines."

"There are no restrictions on rallies under the Central government's guidelines," he stated, adding that Punjab Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi will convene a Corona review meeting and "will make a decision on it soon."

The Punjab government has imposed a night curfew from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. until January 15 to combat the rise of COVID-19 cases in the state. Other state restrictions include the shutdown of all sports facilities, stadiums, swimming pools, and gyms, among others.

As per new guidelines issued by the Punjab government, no restrictions have been imposed on mass gatherings. No guidelines have been issued related to gatherings in marriages and funerals. Earlier, these points were covered in advance whenever Covid guidelines were issued by the government.

According to the state government, people who are vaccinated with both doses will not be allowed in public places.

The Punjab government order also says "all those adult persons who have not yet taken both the doses of COVID vaccination should remain at their residences and should not visit public places, markets, functions, public transport and religious places."

Amid the spread of the deadly Novel Coronavirus, the political parties seem to stress more upon the political race than stressing upon proper 'Social Distancing'. Rallies and Mass gatherings can still be noticed taking place in Punjab.

It’s high time that the election conducting body must intervene and enforce their own Covid-19 restrictions. Many health experts have suggested banning political gatherings, rallies and campaigns as public health is much more important than politics.

Politicians, including Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Punjab Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi have been conducting rallies in all election-bound states of Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab and Goa without wearing face masks and obeying social distancing.

For the past three days, Delhi CM has been conducting rallies in Punjab and on Tuesday, he has tested positive for Covid-19. While conducting the rallies, he wasn’t wearing a face mask and evidently no social distancing was followed. 

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