Highest single-day spike of 70 COVID-19 cases in Assam, Himanta asks people not to return unless 'absolutely necessary'

(Eds: With additional inputs)

Guwahati, May 23 () Assam Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Saturday asked people not to return to the state unless "absolutely necessary" as 70 more people tested positive for coronavirus, the highest single-day jump, taking the total tally to 329.

He also said that the situation in Assam has reached a challenging phase and the government will write to other states to ensure that buses and trucks carrying people without maintaining social distancing are not allowed movement.

Ten new cases were reported in the evening, in addition to 53 in the afternoon and seven in the morning. Advertisement

"Ten new cases of #COVID19+ 4 from Morigaon, 2 from Nalbari, 1 each from Nagaon, Hojai, Golaghat and Jorhat," Sarma said in a tweet.

Out of the total number of positive cases, 268 are active, while 54 people have recovered from the disease and discharged from hospitals.
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Four people have so far died due to the contagion in Assam.

The state government will write to other states to ensure that buses and trucks carrying people without maintaining social distancing are not allowed movement, he said. Advertisement

"There has not been a single positive case among students whose travel was arranged under the supervision of the state government as strict COVID protocols were followed," he said.

The minister said that quarantine of people coming from outside the state will be strictly enforced as "ruthless quarantine with humane heart is our policy".

"We will not allow anyone to go for home quarantine before spending seven full days in institutional facilities," he asserted. Advertisement

Around 1,15,920 people have returned to the state from other parts of the country, while 17,895 people have left Assam, Additional Director General of Police (Law and Order) G P Singh said.

Eighteen Shramik special trains have reached Assam from Chennai, Coimbatore, Bengaluru, Lingampally, Kanpur, Hyderabad and Mumbai, he added.

On May 7, the number of positive cases in the state stood at 48. These mostly included people who attended the Tablighi Jamaat congregation in Delhi. Advertisement

A number of positive cases reported in the past few days are also from different quarantine centres. DG RBT ZMN
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