Kerala

COVID-19 surge | Lockdown begins in Kerala

As the lockdown kicked in at 6 a.m. on May 8 in Kerala, the police were seen intercepting vehicles for inessential travel near the Kumbalam toll plaza. | Photo Credit: Thulasi Kakkat
Special Correspondent THIRUVANANTHAPURAM 08 May 2021 10:25 IST
Updated: 08 May 2021 10:25 IST

People told to remain indoors and avoid inessential travel.

Kerala went into lockdown at 6 a.m. on May 8 as part of efforts to contain the spread of COVID-19.

People have been asked to remain indoors and avoid inessential travel. The police have introduced a slew of measures for the strict enforcement of the restrictions, which will be in effect till May 16. Vigil has been stepped up along the inter-district borders as well.

The police will issue passes for essential travel. The online system for issuing the passes will come into effect by May 8 evening, police officials said. Citizens can also call the helpline number 112 in emergencies.

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Public transport will not ply during the nine-day lockdown period, but people have not been stopped from travelling to hospitals or vaccination centres. Movement of house helps and caregivers for elderly and bedridden persons is permitted. They should carry a self-attested declaration with them.

The government issued fresh orders on Friday allowing restaurants to remain open from 7 a.m. to 7.30 p.m. for home delivery/parcel service of food. People have been asked to wear two masks when venturing outdoors and carry identification cards/travel documents. Banks will function till 1 p.m. on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

Urging the people to cooperate with the measures, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had said on Friday that the alarming rise in COVID-19 cases had forced the State to opt for lockdown. The Chief Minister had also announced the government’s plans to resume the distribution of free food kits.

On Friday alone, Kerala recorded 54 deaths due to COVID-19 and 38,460 new cases. As of Friday, Kerala had 4.02 lakh people in the active case pool. The test positivity rate averaged at 26.64%.

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