After months of battling with the deadly COVID-19 Novel Corona Virus Pandemic for over 9 months, the world has adapted to the "new normal" and is slowly returning to their regular everyday lives, albeit following the safety precautions against COVID. The Indian government has been rolling back the lockdown restrictions in phases and allowing people to resume going about their livelihoods and daily lives. This decision was mainly arrived at not because the threat of the Corona Virus has been eradicated but more so, after considering the flagging economy. The festival season is upon us already with the Deepavali, one of India's largest festivals, right around the corner followed by Christmas and New Year. Deepavali - the festival of lights is usually celebrated by families across India, with relatives meeting up, new clothes, sweets, lights and above all - fireworks & crackers!

However, there has now come a dampener for cracker enthusiasts. The Rajasthan government has now imposed a strict blanket ban on the sale of crackers in the state, keeping in mind the current COVID-19 situation. The Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot put out a tweet, which read, "In order to protect the health of COVID-19 infected patients and general public due to poisonous smoke emanating from firecrackers, strict action has been taken to prohibit the sale of firecrackers in the state and restrict the movement of vehicles without fitness certificate." This move from the Rajasthan government assumes significance as the air pollution levels have been very high in a number of states from North India, in recent times!

Ashok Gehlot reviewed the COVID situation in Rajasthan on Sunday and considered protecting the lives of the people in the state to be paramount for the government. The Rajasthan government has also decided to keep the schools and colleges in the state closed till November 16th. While reviewing the COVID situation, Gehlot also monitored the state government's campaigns - "no mask no entry" and "war for the pure". He has also directed the officials to take strict action against anybody who violates the blanket ban ordered by the government. There is also an initiative to recruit 2000 doctors in the state and they are expected to be appointed within the next 10 days! Establishments like cinema theatres, multiplexes, swimming pools and entertainment parks will remain closed till November 30th, in Rajasthan! Stay tuned for updates...