Pune and Pimpri-Chinchwad Police have clarified that the night curfew in the city has been lifted following new directives issued by the Maharashtra government under ‘Mission Begin Again.’ Officials said that imposing strict norms in containment zones will remain their key focus.
On July 29, the state government had issued revised lockdown directives under the title ‘Mission Begin Again: Easing of Restrictions and Phase wise opening of lockdown.’ These directives came into force across the state from August 1. One more key provision in these directives, pertaining to opening of malls and marketing complexes, will be implemented from August 5. These establishments will be allowed to operate from August 5, between 9 am to 7 pm, but theatres, restaurants and food courts will remain closed.
The directives also make it clear that local authorities, including municipal commissioners or district collectors, have the authority to make variations within the broader guidelines. The directives issued by the state on July 29, however, do not mention the night curfew, unlike the earlier notifications of unlock phase. Police in Pune and Pimpri Chinchwad have clarified that there is no longer any night curfew, which was in force till July 31 from 10 pm till 5 am.
Pune City’s Joint Commissioner of Police Ravindra Shisve said, “Following the state directives under Mission Begin Again, the night curfew has been lifted for now. However, in the coming days, if the situation requires, these restrictions or any other movement restriction can be brought back in consultation with civic bodies. The movement restrictions and vehicle occupancy limits have also been relaxed. We, however, urge citizens to strictly adhere to safety, physical distancing and sanitising norms. We will continue to take action against those violating these norms.”
Shisve added, “The containment zones are getting redrawn at regular intervals considering the case count. People in these areas will have to be extra cautious and adhere to stricter norms of timings and movement restrictions compared to those outside containment zones.” Pune municipal limits have 75 declared containment zones.
Pimpri-Chinchwad jurisdiction’s Deputy Commissioner of Police, Sudhir Hiremath, said, “The night curfew has been lifted for Pimpri-Chinchwad jurisdiction as there is no mention of it in the state directives. Our focus will continue to be on enforcing stricter norms in containment zones. A large chunk of our manpower will continue to be deployed in the containment zones.”
Close to 500 policemen together from Pune and Pimpri-Chinchwad police jurisdiction have till now tested positive. Multiple units are facing problems as several officers and personnel have had to go into quarantine after detection of cases.