Uttarakhand orders new restrictions after tourists throng Mussoorie’s Kempty Falls

As the tourist’s influx has increased in Uttarakhand, Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami on Friday said the state government has issued an order regarding 50 percent occupancy capping in hotels in Nainital and Dehradun.

Speaking to ANI, Dhami said, “We have issued an order regarding 50 per cent occupancy capping in Hotels in Nainital and Dehradun. Challans are being issued to those who aren’t wearing masks. We are making efforts & will follow guidelines to contain the spread of the virus.”

Latest Covid guidelines for Mussoorie

Meanwhile, after tourists flouted COVID norms at Mussoorie’s Kempty Falls, the Uttarakhand government also announced that only 50 visitors will be allowed at the waterfall and they can not stay there beyond half an hour.

The local administration also said that tourists planning to visit Mussoorie from outside Uttarakhand will now need a negative report of an RT-PCR Covid-19 test.

The district administration took these steps after photos of hundreds of tourists bathing together in the waterfall went viral on social media. “Now only 50 tourists are allowed at Kempty Falls (waterfall) in Mussoorie; can’t stay at the spot beyond half an hour,” said Iva Ashish Srivastava, Tehri Garhwal District Magistrate.

The DM further said that the tourists will have to get out of the waterfall as soon as the hooter rings.

Srivastava also said that he has asked Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) and Sub-Divisional Magistrate (SDM) Dhanaulti to set up a check post to monitor the tourists coming to Kempty.

Tourists have been thronging hills as the heatwave has hit the plains and the second wave of COVID-19 seeing a significant decline in the country, although the gross violation of Covid appropriate behaviour by the visitors is being accounted for in many places.

Meanwhile, the Union Health Ministry on Friday cautioned that the second wave of COVID-19 is not over yet and noted that 66 districts in the country reported more than 10 per cent positivity rate for the week ending July 8.

Addressing a press conference, Lav Agarwal, Joint Secretary in the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, said 80 per cent of new cases are coming from 90 districts – indicating the need for focused attention in these areas.

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