Chandigarh: Punjab on Friday reported 105 more coronavirus cases, a day after the state saw an equal number of cases — the highest single-day spike — including 97 returnees from the famous Sikh shrine in Maharashtra’s Nanded.
The new cases include 48 from Amritsar, 16 from Jalandhar, 13 from Ludhiana and six from Mohali.
The northern state’s total is 585 corona cases, of which 457 are active.
As per official figures, over 3,500 pilgrims have returned from Takht Sri Hazur Sahib in Nanded, where they were stranded due to the lockdown. A majority of them have reached Punjab in batches in government-arranged buses.
Likewise, 153 students from Rajasthan’s Kota had returned to Punjab, in addition to 3,085 labourers received at the Fazilka-Rajasthan border.
Chief Minister Amarinder Singh has ordered compulsory institutional quarantine for both positive and negative cases.
In a televised address to the people, he said there was no mismanagement of the coronavirus crisis or widespread infections in the state, as was allegedly projected by the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) and the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP).
Most of the cases now were of those returning from other states, he said.
The Chief Minister called upon the people not to be worried about the sudden spike in corona cases since that could be expected over the next few days as more people return to their homes from other states after the government of India’s decision to allow the movement of stranded people.
Urging the opposition to join hands in tackling coronavirus, and work shoulder to shoulder with his government in the interest of Punjab and its people, the Chief Minister said: “It is time not to score brownie points but to show unity.”