April 19, 2021 5:42:33 am
With a combined population of over 35,000, two upscale colonies of Ludhiana — Urban Estate phase-1 and Urban Estate phase-2 of Dugri — were declared as Covid containment zones and put under lockdown from 9 pm on Sunday, till further orders.
As of Sunday, these colonies formed the biggest containment zones of Punjab.
“The colonies have been sealed and all protocols of lockdown will be observed in these areas. There will be no inward or outward movement of people except for essential services,” Ludhiana DC Varinder Kumar Sharma told The Indian Express.
The lockdown has sent alarm bells ringing among residents of not only Ludhiana but the whole state.
DC Sharma said, “A containment zone is formed when 15 cases are reported in a particular area, but more than 70 cases were reported in Urban estate phase 1 and Urban estate phase 2, Dugri, recently. I appeal to residents of these two areas to make appropriate preparations. We had informed them about the lockdown at 2 pm on Sunday, 7 hours prior to enforcement.”
At around 9 pm, the Ludhiana police commissioner tweeted: “We will be having zero tolerance for people moving out without masks, also zero tolerance for violation of night curfew orders after 9 pm. It is a last warning to people.”
Medical facilities will remain as normal, sweepers will be visiting the area to pick up garbage. Groceries, milk, vegetables will be supplied in the area during fixed hours, said authorities. Thorough sampling will be done in the entire area after sealing it and the containment zone will be lifted once the area is clear of Covid cases, said the DC.
Meanwhile many prominent schools of Ludhiana like Satpaul Mittal, BCM Dugri branch, MGM School, Ram Lal Bhasin School, Bal Bharti Public School, Greenland Public School etc. are located in these areas where staff used to come to take online classes while many banks, BSNL office are also located here. Many prominent industrialists live in these colonies as well.
Area MLA Simarjeet Singh Bains said, “Around 35,000 people have been affected due to this lockdown in both phase 1 and 2. I fail to understand whether lockdown is the answer to contain cases. We have seen it in the past 13 months that lockdown did not yield any results. Awareness is the only answer. People should take steam at least twice a day, but administration will never focus on these basic precautions. Thousands of employees will not be able to go to their offices, hence, I don’t find it a good way to control Covid cases.”
He further said: “Many other areas will also be affected due to lockdown in these areas as it will not remain limited to these two areas.”
On Sunday, residents were seen rushing to buy groceries and other essentials soon after news of the lockdown was flashed by district administration.
As of now, there are 8 more containment zones in Punjab, with a total population of 16,785 people. In Gurdaspur’s Babehali area, a total of 5,287 people reside in a containment zone. Hence, Dugri phases 1 and 2 comprise the biggest containment zone of Punjab as of now.
In addition to this, Punjab has a total of 98 micro containment zones where a total of 27,581 people have been contained. Amritsar has the maximum micro containment zones at 22, followed by Ludhiana with 11.
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