Tourists have been escaping Himachal Pradesh as the heatwave hit the plains and COVID-19 cases decline in the country. Tourists are visiting hotspots like Shimla, Kufri, Narkanda, Dalhousie, Manali, Lahaul, and other places in large numbers to get rid of the scorching heat. The occupancy in the hotels has increased in the past few days. In fact, the occupancy in the hotels remains between 60 and 90 percent during weekends.
Seeing the surge in tourists, The Union Health Ministry said that it can re-impose COVID-19 restrictions if tourists do not comply with the protocols. During a press conference, Joint Secretary Lav Agarwal said “We can nullify the ease in restrictions again if protocols not complied with.”
The Himachal Pradesh Government Relaxed COVID-19 Travel Curbs
The Himachal Pradesh government announced the relaxation of COVID-19 curbs from June 14. As per the latest guidelines, travellers will no longer need negative RT-PCR test reports to enter the state. Shops will now be allowed to open from 9 am to 8 pm and restaurants can stay open till 10 pm. Moreover, the government has removed mandatory e-pass for tourists entering the state from July 1. So, visitors can travel to Himachal Pradesh without an e-pass.
— Himachal Tourism (@hptdc) June 24, 2021
The Himachal Pradesh Government Had Earlier Imposed A Night Curfew
Due to the alarming rise in COVID-19 cases, the Himachal Pradesh government had imposed a night curfew from April 27 to May 10, 2021. The night curfew was in force in four districts, namely Kangra, Una, Solan and Sirmour from 10 PM to 5 AM. Additionally, the state had also made it mandatory for visitors and state residents to produce COVID-19 negative reports, not earlier than 72 hours before entering the state. So, if the snowcapped mountains of Spiti Valley are calling you, treehouses in Jibhi beckon you for a secluded holiday, you’d need a Covid negative report to visit the gorgeous state of Himachal Pradesh. Those who do not present the negative RT-PCR report had to undergo home quarantine for 14 days.
Earlier, Himachal Had Made RT-PCR Negative Report Compulsory From 7 States
The decision of mandating a negative Covid test report for entering Himachal Pradesh was taken after reviewing the coronavirus situation in the state. Earlier, Himachal Pradesh issued a similar order for labourers of other states entering Spiti valley for work. Apart from this, contractors were also asked to present negative RT-PCR tests before stepping foot into the valley. But now, Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur has made it mandatory for everyone entering the state from Punjab, Delhi, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Karnataka, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh to carry a negative Covid test from April 16 onwards.
Gujarat, Delhi, Assam, Odisha & Karnataka Also Mandate Covid Negative Test Report
Karnataka, Delhi, Assam, Odisha, Uttarakhand and Gujarat also issued similar orders to curb the rising Covid cases in the country amid the second wave. Himachal Pradesh already shut down all educational institutions till April 21. Weddings and other gatherings are restricted to just 50 people indoors and 200 people outdoors. Moreover, for funerals, only 50 people shall be permitted. Lately, Himachal Pradesh witnessed 941 cases of Covid-19 as of April 10. This took the state’s total tally to 69,114 cases. Himachal Pradesh’s current death toll stands at 1102 and fresh fatalities are recorded at 12.
Travelling to Himachal Pradesh amid the Covid-19 second wave is undoubtedly a risky affair. So a great way to travel to the destination of your choice is through virtual tours. Here’s a gorgeous virtual tour of Manali. Enjoy!