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Tamil Nadu announces night curfew, complete lockdown on Sundays to curb Covid spread

The state recorded its highest single-day Covid spike, reporting 10,723 cases on Sunday. This took the overall tally to 9,91,451.

Edappadi K PalaniswamiAIADMK leader and former Tamil Nadu CM Edappadi K Palaniswami (File photo)

On a day when the number of daily cases crossed 10,000 in Tamil Nadu, the state government Sunday issued a set of fresh restrictions to curb the spread of Covid-19. The restrictions, which will come into effect from April 20, include a night curfew from 10 pm to 4 am and full lockdown on Sundays.

The state recorded its highest single-day Covid spike, reporting 10,723 cases on Sunday. This took the overall tally to 9,91,451. With 42 fatalities, the death toll in Tamil Nadu reached 13,113. Chennai alone accounted for 3,304 fresh cases and 16 deaths, the highest among all the districts in Tamil Nadu.

Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami called in officials for an urgent meeting on Sunday to discuss the Covid crisis. The restrictions were announced later in the evening.

What are the things that have been restricted?

As per the fresh restrictions, public and private bus transport, including auto-rickshaws, taxis, and other vehicles, will not be allowed to ply during the night curfew hours and on Sundays.

All public and private transport, including inter-state and inter-district bus services, can, however, operate outside the curfew hours but they must follow all Covid protocols.

Class XII state board exams have been postponed in the state. However, the practical exams will take place as per schedule.

Necessary services like milk distribution, hospitals, Covid testing centres, ambulances, labs, pharmacies, and petrol, diesel and LPG services will be allowed to function during the curfew hours. Petrol and diesel bunks will not be affected by the curfew.

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Public entry has been prohibited to Nilgris, Kodaikanal and Yercaud and other tourist spots including beaches, parks and zoos.

IT companies have been directed to allow 50 per cent of their employees to work from home.

On Sundays, meat shops, theatres, shopping complexes and other shops will not be allowed to operate. Strict action will be initiated against the violators.

Continuous processing industries and other factories manufacturing necessary items have been allowed to operate. Employees working in these companies can commute to work during the curfew hours. But they must carry their identity cards.

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Hotels can run only take-away services between 6 am to 10 am, from 12 pm to 3 pm and from 6 pm to 9 pm. Food delivery aggregators like Swiggy and Zomato will also be allowed to operate during these hours.

Non-necessary e-commerce services will not be allowed to function during the lockdowns on Sundays.

Marriage events can be held with not more than 100 people and funerals with gatherings of than 50 people.

College and university professors have been asked to take classes online. All college and university examinations will be conducted online, the government has said.

Summer camps have also been prohibited. As announced earlier on April 10, shopping malls and theatres can operate with 50 per cent occupancy.

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All essential services, including medical and emergency services as well as print and electronic media, remain outside the purview of the restrictions.

Moreover, a special committee will be set up in each district to monitor whether the restrictions imposed by the government are being implemented.

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People have been asked to extend their full support to the government and strict action will be initiated against the violators.

First published on: 18-04-2021 at 21:08 IST
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