Bengal government today announced enforcing yet another phase of “strict lockdown” in the containment zones from 5 pm on 9 July onwards across the state in the wake of fresh Covid cases surpassing all previous daily records for the last few days.

The decision was taken after most of the district magistrates proposed enforcing lockdown for combating spread of the disease due to surge in cases. The current buffer zones and containment zones have been clubbed together into ‘revised broadbased containment zones’ wherein the lockdown will be enforced.

In a notification issued by state home secretary Alapan Bandopadhyay this evening, it was stated that “all government and private offices, all non-essential activities, all congregation, all transportation and all marketing/ industrial/ trading activities” will be closed in the broad-based containment zones.

“Residents of the containment zones may be exempted and prohibited from attending government and private office: in fact, their ingress and egress may be strictly regulated,” read the notification. The local authorities will try to arrange home delivery for the residents staying inside the broadbased containment zones, it added.

Currently, 33 areas of the city have been included under the containment zones. Some of these areas are namely Bhowanipore, Alipore, Tollygunge, Panditiya Road, Mukundapur, Gariahat, Lake Road, Ultadanga, Kankurgachi, Beliaghata, Phoolbagan, HUDCO, Bijoygarh, Jadavpur, New Alipore, Kasba, Ajoynagar and Baghbazar. Among these zones, there are many high-rises and apartments from where multiple cases have been reported in the last few days.

Police have already cordoned off the entryexit gates. “The purview of the containment zones has been increased and police have been asked to enforce the lockdown strictly in these zones,” said Kolkata mayor Firad Hakim. Police would inform residents about the containment zones through miking and the list of broadbased containment zones will be notified in the Egiye Bangla website as well.

According to sources, lockdown has been enforced in some areas of Malda and North Dinajpur from tomorrow itself. Meanwhile, 850 fresh Covid cases and 25 deaths were recorded in the state in the last 24 hours taking the total case count to 23,837 and death toll to 804. In Kolkata, 291 fresh cases and 10 deaths were recorded followed by North 24-Parganas with 189 cases and nine deaths.

Currently, there are 7,243 active cases and a total of 15,790 Covid patients were cured with 555 discharged from hospitals in a single day.