Amid rising cases of COVID-19, the streets of Maharashtra's Aurangabad wore a deserted look on the first day of night curfew (9 pm-6 am).
"The night curfew will go on till April 4. Only emergency services will be permitted during this time period," said Inspector Venkatesh Kendarkar of Jinsi Police Station.
The restaurants are allowed to deliver food to houses but dine-in has been shut down in the area, the police official added.
The Union Health Ministry on Thursday during its weekly press conference expressed concerns over the COVID-19 situation in Maharashtra and said that the reduced testing, tracing and lack of COVID appropriate behaviours have led to the surge in active cases in the state.
"We are very worried about Maharashtra. This is a serious matter. This has two lessons- don't take the virus for granted and if we have to remain Covid free, then, we need to follow Covid appropriate behaviour," Member (Health), NITI Aayog Dr VK Paul said.
Echoing a similar remark, Balram Bhargava Director General of the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) said that Maharashtra has shown a worrisome trend.
Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Thursday said strict lockdown measures will be enforced in some parts of the state to contain the spread of COVID-19.
Earlier in the day, a complete lockdown has been announced in the Nagpur city area from March 15 to March 21 in view of the rising infections.
As per official data, Maharashtra on Thursday recorded 14,317 new coronavirus cases, the highest one-day spike this year, which took the state's caseload to 22,66,374. There are 1,06,070 active cases in the state.
Meanwhile, the Ministry said the situation in Kerala is improving and informed the active Covid-19 cases have almost halved in the state in the past few days while cases in Maharashtra have doubled.