After hundreds flout COVID protocols at Kempty Falls, Mussoorie caps number of visitors to 50
Despite the looming threat of the third wave of Covid-19, videos and pictures of long queues of private vehicles, overcrowded tourist locations have raised alarm.
The Uttarakhand government announced on Friday its decision to allow only 50 tourists at Mussoorie's Kempty falls, a day after a shocking video clip that went viral showed hundreds of people thronging at the popular waterfall and flouting coronavirus disease (Covid-19)-necessitated protocols.
“There will be a time limit of 30 minutes for each bather," District Magistrate Iva Ashish Shrivastava said, adding an air horn will be used to signal the exit time. The order came a day after viral videos showed a large number of tourists bathing at the falls without wearing masks or maintaining social distancing norms.
The decision to impose new rules was taken after a video went viral, which showed many tourists flouting all the Covid-19 guidelines while enjoying a bath at the famous Kempty Falls. The visitors were seen without face mask and blatantly flouting social distancing norms.
In the last few days, several photos have emerged from Himachal Pradesh's Shimla, Manali, Dharamshala wherein tourists have been flocking in large numbers and rampant flouting of Covid-appropriate behaviour noticed.
The Union government had earlier, too, issued warnings against overcrowding at popular tourist destinations across India, but it seems to be having little effect on tourists. Days ago, pictures of overcrowded streets emerged on social media from Manali with zero regard for physical distancing norms. Notably, the Union ministry of health and family welfare had issued a warning against ‘revenge travel’ and overcrowding of these tourist spots.
"People are indulging in revenge travel with restrictions being lifted. They need to understand that the virus and the disease are still here. People roaming in hill stations and markets without maintaining physical distance and not wearing masks can nullify the gains made in the management of the pandemic so far," joint secretary in the Health Ministry Lav Agarwal said as he stressed on following Covid-appropriate behaviour and vaccination.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi also expressed concern over people thronging to hill stations and markets in huge numbers and also not following appropriate Covid behaviour. He made the observation while interacting with his new Council of Ministers on Thursday.
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