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Congress targets Himanta Biswa Sarma over ‘no need to wear mask’ comment

GUWAHATI: Amid a nationwide rise in COVID-19 cases, the All India Professionals Congress (AIPC) Assam body has trained its crosshairs on the state minister Himanta Biswa Sarma for his controversial comment on mask-wearing.

Speaking to the press, the President of AIPC state body president Gauravv Somani said that the recent remark by the health minister regarding not to wear mask as there is no COVID has “further diluted the seriousness of the emergency situation.”

“As reported, various government offices and banks are witnessing arguments over not allowing people to enter premises without wearing a mask and on the other side people without face masks are citing and referring to the recent statement of the health Minister,” Somani said.

On Saturday Mr Sarma, who is the state health minister, had said: “There is no Covid in Assam… there is no need to wear a face mask now in Assam… If there is a need I will inform the people…”

This comment drew flak as there has been a steep rise in the number of COVID-19 cases over the past couple of weeks, with what is believed to be the second wave of infections sweeping across several states — most notably Maharashtra and Karnataka.

Those who are making fun on my statement on masks must come to Assam and see how we have contained COVID-19, compared to states like Delhi, Kerala and Maharashtra… along with impressive recovery of economy,” he tweeted.

“We will celebrate Bihu also with the same enthusiasm this year,” he added.

The Congress leader also raised “serious concern over the rising cases of covid-19 in Assam and” has urged the State Government and the administration to take all possible precautionary measures to restrict the further spread of the virus in the state.

“With more than 1 lakh covid-19 cases reported daily nationwide and a sudden rise of covid-19 patients particularly in Guwahati is alarming and worrying,” the body said.

Somani said that it’s “high time that the government should issue fresh SOP to control Covid-19 virus” and also urged the Central Government to allow the vaccination for the people below the age of 45, as most of the vaccination centres are seen with less turnout of people and also left overdoses of vaccines is wasted.

“It is appropriate to start the vaccination drive for the people below the age group of 45 so that the maximum people come under the ambit of covid-19 vaccine seeing the emerging situation,” he added.

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