Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Thursday announced a two-hour extension of the night curfew in the nine-worst affected districts in the state amid a recent spate of COVID-19 cases. 

Addressing a presser to mark the completion of four years of his government in the state, Singh labelled the coronavirus situation in the state as “critical and warned of stringent measures if people failed to comply with health-safety protocols, PTI reported. 

“I won’t be easy on the people. People may not like it but its my duty,” he said. “For God’s sake, save the lives of Punjabis.”

The night curfew will now be in place from 9 pm, instead of 11 pm, to 5 am in Ludhiana, Jalandhar, Patiala, Mohali, Amritsar, Gurdaspur, Hoshiarpur, Kapurthala and Rupnagar.

All these districts have been reporting more than 100 cases everyday.

The announcement came after 2,039 new cases and 35 more fatalities were reported in the state on Wednesday.

Ludhiana had reported 233 cases, Jalandhar 277, Patiala 203, Mohali 222, Amritsar 178, Gurdaspur 112, Hoshiarpur 191, Kapurthala 157 and Rupnagar 113.

A number of stringent measures, including restrictions on gatherings, will be be introduced soon after discussions with the state government’s expert COVID-19 team, the chief minister said.

“Whether these will include restrictions on political gatherings is also something that will be decided as per the medical expert team’s advice,” he added.