Bengaluru Buzz: Night curfew lifted | Halt on vehicle towing…and more

As COVID cases decline, night curfew has been lifted in Bengaluru, but other restrictions remain. Read more in our weekly news roundup.

Night curfew lifted, other restrictions remain

City police commissioner Kamal Pant issued orders withdrawing the night curfew, on Monday. But the prohibition on rallies, dharnas and congregations will remain. Three hundred guests in open places and 200 in closed places will be permitted at marriage functions. Fifty per cent occupancy will be allowed in cinema halls, auditoriums, swimming pools, gyms, sports complexes and stadia.

The order will remain in force till 5 am on February 15. Those violating the order will be booked under the Disaster Management Act, IPC Section 188, and under Karnataka Epidemic Diseases Act.

Source: Deccan Herald

State: 55% COVID deaths within two days of admission

An analysis by the State Health Department found that over 55% of the total COVID deaths this January happened within two days of the patient reporting to hospital. State Health Commissioner D Randeep attributed to this patients ignoring symptoms and not approaching hospitals on time.

Daily COVID case count is falling, with Bengaluru on Thursday reporting 6,640 fresh infections and total active caseload of 71,525. The daily test positivity rate in the city has plummeted from 27.2% to 11.7% within 10 days. Health officials claim that a major section of the population has been exposed to the virus and most have remained asymptomatic.

On Tuesday, out of 455 active hospitalisations, 32% were those aged 60 and above, followed by 22.8% aged between 41 and 60 years. Ten children were also admitted. Dr Thrilok Chandra, Special Commissioner (Health) at BBMP, said all these children had serious comorbidities that complicated their condition.

Bengaluru's COVID data as on February 5th
COVID update as on February 5th. Bengaluru’s case count continues to decline. Source: BBMP

Meanwhile, home cooks and caterers are in high demand, as entire families who are down with COVID are turning to them for nutritious meals. 

Source: Deccan Herald, The Hindu, Indian Express, The Times of India

Read more: COVID Advisory: Ensuring children are cared for, in our absence

Vehicle towing to be temporarily stopped

On Wednesday, Karnataka government announced that the towing of vehicles will be stopped until clear and simplified rules are put in place. Many citizens have complained that the city does not have a robust parking policy, leading to chaos on the streets and leaving vehicle owners to confront enforcement authorities.

A senior police official said there is no clear earmarking of parking slots on most roads, which obstructs smooth traffic movement and leads to conflicts between commuters and the traffic police. BBMP should introduce smart parking systems at least in the CBD (Central Business District), he said.

Source: The Hindu

Citizens applaud Active Mobility Bill

At a two-hour discussion organised by the NGO Janaagraha, many participants praised the Active Mobility Bill drafted by the DULT (Directorate of Urban Land Transport), especially its efforts to protect the rights of pedestrians and cyclists. DULT Commissioner V Manjula said the bill is welcome at a time when cities across the world are re-evaluating priorities and recognising the role of non-motorised transport.

Source: Deccan Herald

Waste collection fee to be linked with Bescom bill

BBMP has sought approval from the State UDD (Urban Development Department) to charge users for its door-to-door waste collection service. The user fee, comprising different slabs, has been fixed by co-relating it with the monthly electricity bill. This is because electricity bill can be an indicator of household income, and varies according to the number of residents, said a senior official. BBMP has not yet shared the user fee slab.

Source: Deccan Herald

Read more: Podcast: How citizen activists are trying to solve Bengaluru’s garbage problem

45-day deadline to complete two underpass works

Upalokayukta Justice B S Patil, after visiting the Kodigehalli-Virupakshapura railway underpass and the Sahakaranagar underpass under construction, set a deadline of 45 days for completion of both works.

Many residents had complained that the Railways and the BBMP ignored their pleas and dragged on the works for a decade, forcing them to travel an additional 4-5 km. Besides, the underpasses get waterlogged during monsoons. Justice Patil warned of action against BBMP officials in case of further delay.

Source: Deccan Herald

Pro-Kannada organisations decry other languages in FM Rainbow

On Tuesday, pro-Kannada organisations protested outside the Prasar Bharati offices on Raj Bhavan Road, demanding that content in other languages should not be aired on the FM Rainbow station.

Source: The Indian Express

HC to hear petitions for hijab

On Tuesday, the Karnataka High Court will hear two petitions seeking a directive to permit Muslim students to wear headscarves when attending classes. Home Minister Araga Jnanendra had said that children should neither wear hijab nor saffron shawls at schools and asked the police to keep watch on religious organisations trying to undermine the country’s unity.

Source: The Times of India

[Compiled by Revathi Siva Kumar]

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