Bengaluru

‘Curfew-like’ restrictions enforced across State

All activities barring essential services prohibited

Scaling up the precautionary measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19, the Karnataka government on Monday enforced “curfew-like” restrictions across the State from Tuesday and will be in force till March 31.

‘Curfew-like’ restrictions enforced across State

All public and private transport including Uber, Ola and autos will be off the road, while only essential services will be available across the State.

The government, which had initially announced restrictions only in nine districts that had reported COVID-19 cases, later revised the order to cover the entire State. The government has enforced this under Epidemic Disease Act, 1981, making more stringent the guidelines put in place earlier.

Late on Monday night, Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa tweeted: “After assessing the situation of #covid_19, we have decided to lockdown not just 9 districts but the whole State of Karnataka starting tomorrow till March 31st. I request all citizens to cooperate and please stay indoors.”

Earlier in the day, Medical Education Minister K. Sudhakar had expressed concern that despite declaration of lockdown, people were not completely confining themselves indoors. This would increase the chances of the spread of the virus, he observed, while pointing out that so far the State had reported 33 positive cases of COVID-19. Only services and activities related to health, medicine, agriculture, and grocery would be allowed to operate in these districts, the Minister said. Similarly, industries would be asked to ensure that only 50% of their workforce were deployed for work. Government and private offices would be classified as “essential” and “non-essential” services depending upon the nature of operation and only those in the essential sector would be allowed to operate, the Minister said.

Tests

The government had decided to strictly quarantine and test all those who had come in contact with the COVID-19 patients. It had been decided to test at least 200 people for a population of 10 lakh, he said. To facilitate this, licences would be granted to more number of government and private labs, he said.

While a testing lab was already set up in Kalaburagi, a similar facility was about to commence in Ballari, Belagavi, Mangaluru, and Hubballi and at NIMHANS in Bengaluru, he said.

The government would obtain the services of police in keeping a vigil on the C-category international travellers who have been home quarantined. The family members of such persons would also be quarantined and the police would be instructed to paste notices on their houses and also inform locals about it, he said.

A vigilance team comprising senior IAS officers had been formed to monitor the situation, he said. Special hospitals will be identified for handling the COVID-19 cases while more “fever clinics” would be set up for conducting tests, he said.

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Printable version | Apr 4, 2020 11:17:18 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/bangalore/curfew-like-restrictions-enforced-across-state/article31146455.ece

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