New lockdown restrictions come into force in Coimbatore, Ooty

The busy Cross Cut Road in Coimbatore city wears a deserted look on Thursday.   | Photo Credit: PERIASAMY M

Retail outlets in Coimbatore downed shutters on Thursday in compliance with the new restrictions announced by the State government to control the spread of the pandemic.

Except for a few small eateries, push carts that sell food items, and workshops, almost all the shops were closed. Wholesale grocery shops on RG Street remained open till noon. With no major functions and educational institutions also closed, there was hardly any rush, says a shop owner on the street. Vegetable shops in TK Market also closed down at the specified time. There were very few customers too. The wholesalers will have to move vegetables to Kerala in the evening. There is no clarity yet on moving of vegetables in the evening hours, says M. Rajendran, president of the market.

P. Kumaravel Pandian, Coimbatore Corporation Commissioner, inspected the vegetable market at Ukkadam and the shopping areas such as Raja Street, RG Street and TK Market. He asked the shop owners to ensure that customers wore masks and maintained physical distance. During the inspection, he also ordered imposing of ₹200 fine each on 11 people for not wearing marks and ₹500 each on two shops for not ensuring physical distancing.

Tasmac outlets in Coimbatore district witnessed heavy rush from 10 a.m. to noon due to the revised timing. However, many outlets did not have rush from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m.

An employee from one of the outlets said that several customers were unaware of the revised timing from 8 a.m. to noon. A total of 135 shops in Coimbatore south division and 157 outlets in Coimbatore north division functioned till noon.

With the shops closed and offices functioning with just 50 % staff, the vehicle movement on the roads was relatively less.

The Coimbatore Division of the Tamil Nadu State Transport Corporation (TNSTC) on Thursday reduced about 20 town buses following reduction in patronage.

TNSTC officials said that while 640 town buses were operated till Wednesday, 620 town buses were operated on Thursday. However, the number of mofussil buses operated continued to remain as 300.

According to the new restrictions, the occupancy of the number of passengers in government and private buses will be limited to 50 %. The occupancy was found to be lower than 50% in the town buses on Thursday and no major violations were reported. The TNSTC would revise the number of town and mofussil buses soon as per the existing demand, the officials said.


In Udhagamandalam, parts of the Nilgiris witnessed heavy crowds as people queued up to buy essential commodities before the shops closed.

The Commercial Road in Udhagamandalam witnessed heavy traffic as people rushed to the shops. Police presence was stepped up to ensure traffic did not come to a standstill. Officials from the district administration deployed teams to ensure that COVID-19 safety protocols were followed inside the Udhagamandalam Municipal Market and the Coonoor Market.

Meat stalls witnessed the most crowding. Shop owners warned many customers that the municipality would fine them, as they did not wear the mask properly.

Almost all the shops closed at noon. In Coonoor, officials sealed a bakery where physical distancing norms were not followed and a fine was imposed on the owners of the bakery for failing to ensure adherence to COVID-19 protocols.

\(With inputs from M. Soundariya Preetha, Wilson Thomas and R. Akileish and Rohan Premkumar in Udhagamandalam)

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Printable version | Jun 21, 2021 10:22:58 PM |

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