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COVID-19: Tripura announces lockdown from tomorrow, warns of sedition charges for hoarders

However, emergency services like health services, police, armed forces and paramilitary forces, law and order enforcement agencies, food outlets, hotels, banks, ATM counters, grocery stores, markets etc. would stay functional.

Written by Debraj Deb | Agartala | Updated: March 23, 2020 8:48:48 pm
No unemployment, food crisis in Tripura: Bilab Deb In his address at a press conference here this evening, Chief Minister Biplab Deb said that the lockdown would come in effect in all parts of Tripura from 2 pm tomorrow. (File)

Tripura government has announced a lockdown to prevent spread of novel coronavirus (COVID -19) from 2 pm on Tuesday. It also warned that the it would slap sedition charges alongwith other provisions of Epidemic Diseases Act on anyone found hoarding essential commodities or creating artificial price hike. The lockdown restrictions would continue till 5 pm on March 31.

In his address at a press conference here this evening, Chief Minister Biplab Deb said that the lockdown would come in effect in all parts of Tripura from 2 pm tomorrow.

“Lockdown shall stay in force till 5 PM on March 31. The restrictions will be mainly on public transport, unnecessary public movement. Restrictions may be extended after evaluating situation at that time,” Deb told reporters.

However, emergency services like health services, police, armed forces and paramilitary forces, law and order enforcement agencies, food outlets, hotels, banks, ATM counters, grocery stores, markets etc. would stay functional. Government offices will be open but rosters will be maintained to minimise public contact.

The state government has already closed down its borders with Bangladesh, suspended inter-state bus travel, shut down schools, colleges, universities, gymnasiums etc. few days back as precautions. However, cargo movement via road will continue.

“Everything necessary for people will stay open. State government is careful to ensure that people don’t face any immediate problems. But I shall strictly ask people not to go out of home without necessity. Everyone should stay neat and clean, timely take food and maintain social distancing,” Deb said and asked people not to panic.

He warned if anyone is found roaming without necessity, they will be arrested and penalised. PM Modi has asked everyone to stay wherever they are. If there is any problem, our government will correspond with them.

On excessive price hike in local markets, Biplab said strict action would be taken on anyone trying to hoard goods and create artificial price hike.

“There is no crisis. The government has 2 months buffer stock, private traders have some one month stocks with them. If anyone tries to hoard goods and create crisis, government will slap sedition charges along with Epidemic Diseases Act penal provisions on them”, Deb warned.

He also the Director General of Police to take action on anyone trying to spread false rumours regarding lockdown on social media.

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