KOLKATA: Amid a surge in Covid-19 cases, the West Bengal government on Saturday announced a complete lockdown for 15 days starting from Sunday.
All private and government offices will remain closed, intra-state transport - including metro rail - will be stopped and political and religious congregations won't be allowed during this period.
The order also imposed a night curfew from 9 pm to 5 am.
Retail shops and supplies, vegetable vendors, chicken and meat shops, and fruit traders will be allowed to operate only from 7 am to 10 am. Sweet shops can stay open from 10 am to 5 pm. Marriage ceremonies will be permitted with a maximum of 50 persons.
"To ensure the health of the people and control in the Covid-19 situation, the state government is forced to impose this restriction. Bengal is going through an unprecedented situation where the scarcity of oxygen and medicines required to treat Covid patients is increasing. To control this situation, we are imposing strict conditions," said chief secretary Alapan Banerjee.
"Petrol pumps will remain open and essential services like milk, water, medicine, electricity, fire, law and order and media will not come under the purview of it," he added.
"All intra-state movement of trucks, goods carriers shall be stopped except relating to medical supplies, oxygen, essential food commodities including milk, eggs, meat, fish, petrol/diesel and LPG. All industries and manufacturing units shall remain closed except those involved in medical supplies," the order said.
Operations of jute mills shall be allowed with 30% of total strength in each shift.
Earlier, the state government imposed partial lockdown allowing intra-state transports and local transport modes to ply and shops to operate between 7 am and 10 am and 5 pm and 7 pm.