Police toughen stand against violators in Kozhikode

Crackdown: The police cordoned off several junctions in Kozhikode city on Wednesday to stop people from freely roaming on the streets.

Crackdown: The police cordoned off several junctions in Kozhikode city on Wednesday to stop people from freely roaming on the streets.   | Photo Credit: S.RAMEH KURUP

Nearly 350 cases registered in Kozhikode city

On the second day of the Statewide lockdown on Wednesday, the district administration came up with stringent measures to tackle the menace of people defying orders of the government to remain indoors.

Nearly 350 cases were registered in Kozhikode city. However, the number of cases registered in rural areas that comprised Vadakara, Koyilandy and Thamarassery taluks were below 15, officials said.

The Collector had imposed Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) in the district from Monday to counter the spread of COVID-19. Kozhikode district has the highest number of people, nearly 10,000, under observation in the State.

As elsewhere in the State, residents were seen gathering in large numbers at supermarkets and department stores from 7 a.m. on Wednesday. People were rushing to stock provisions despite the government announcing that the State had enough stocks of commodities available to meet the needs during the entire 21-day lockdown period.

With more people pouring into the roads, the police began to cordon off areas at several junctions to stop them from freely roaming on the streets. Those who were unnecessarily seen on the roads were booked under various sections of the Indian Penal Code.

The police said that many of those travelling in motorbikes and four-wheelers had declaration forms with them. However, police personnel found that some of these had frivolous reasons written on them.

Things began to improve by mid-noon with the proactive steps taken by the police. More restrictions would be put in place from Thursday.

Public transport, except autorickshaws and taxis, remained off the road. But their numbers were less compared to Tuesday. Provision stores, vegetable and fruits vendors, fish and chicken stalls were opened from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.

There were complaints that traders hiked the prices of vegetables and fruits to cash in on the huge demand. Onions, potatoes and tomatoes, which were selling at around ₹30 a kg till Tuesday, were sold at ₹40 and above on Wednesday. Some stores claiming to offer organic vegetables were selling onions even at ₹60 and carrots at ₹80 per kg. The prices of bananas, which were sold at ₹35 to ₹40 a kg, was steeply hiked to ₹65 a kg.

The closure of retail liquor outlets from Wednesday gave a huge relief to law enforcers. Managing the crowd at the outlets was a daunting task for officials and the police, they said.

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Printable version | Apr 5, 2020 7:38:09 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/kozhikode/police-toughen-stand-against-violators-in-kozhikode/article31167593.ece

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