COVID-19: TN CM puts Chennai, other urban areas under full shutdown mode

COVID-19: TN CM puts Chennai, other urban areas under full shutdown mode
Chennai, Apr 24 () Tightening restrictions furtherin select urban areas to help prevent the spread of COVID-19,Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K Palaniswami on Friday announced acomplete shutdown beginning Sunday in Chennai, Coimbatore andMadurai for four days, disallowing grocery shops as well andfully curtailing movement of public.

Also, Salem and Tirupur in western Tamil Nadu will beshut similarly, albeit for three days from April 26 andPalaniswami assured people that vegetables and fruits shallreach their doorsteps via mobile outlets.


"To vend vegetables and fruits, only mobile outletsshall be allowed," the Chief Minister said.

The government had already made mobile outlets (minitrucks and tri-cycles) selling vegetables and fruitsoperational in urban regions and Palaniswami had time andagain appealed to people to buy food staples for at least aweek and eliminate the need to visit local markets everyday.

Following a review meeting on the COVID-19 scenario inthe State, Palaniswami said public health and medical expertshave opined that imposing further restrictions in urbanregions alone will help prevent the spread of contagion.

Till Thursday, Tamil Nadu had 1,683 confirmed COVID-19cases and Chennai topped the list with 400 infected peoplefollowed by Coimbatore (134) and Tirupur (110).


Madurai and Salem have 52 and 29 cases respectively.

The government has, hence, decided to tighten curbsunder the Disaster Management Act, 2005 in select urbanregions based on expert opinion, the Chief Minister said in anofficial release here.

"The lockdown will be fully implemented in thecorporation areas of Chennai, Coimbatore and Madurai from 6 amon April 26 till 9 pm on April 29," Palaniswami said addingSalem and Tirupur corporation zones will see similar completelockdown between Sunday 6 am and Tuesday (April 28) 9 pm.

In all other areas of Tamil Nadu, the curbs already inplace will continue to be in force, Palaniswami said andappealed to the people to fully cooperate to halt the spreadof COVID-19.

He said the movement of people will be fully curtailedin the listed urban areas adding in case of violations, toughaction will be taken and vehicles seized.


While groceries and vegetable shops are now beingallowed to operate till 1 pm daily, such outlets will not bepermitted to function from April 26 and vegetables and fruitsshall be made available to people through mobile outlets, thegovernment said.

During these days of intensified curbs, disinfectiontasks will be carried out twice in containment zones and onlyAmma Canteens, ATMs, hospitals, labs, pharmacies and alliedservices like ambulances shall be functional.

Home delivery of food alone is permitted fromrestaurants, the government said and listed community kitchensand aid for the indigent people (with approval fromauthorities) under the limited activities that are allowed.

State government offices carrying out essentialfunctions including the Secretariat here will operate withonly requisite staff and similarly banks and Centralgovernment offices may employ only 33 per cent of employees.

While employees in sectors like information technologycould work from home, other private sector firms shall remainclosed, the government said. VGNSS

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