Chaos reigns at Kerala check-posts as returnees arrive in droves

Chaos reigns at Kerala check-posts as returnees arrive in droves

Walayar: Chaos reigned along the border check-posts in Kerala as a large number of people, even those without travel pass, arrived from other states amid the COVID-19 lockdown.

Scores of Keralites were stranded at the check-posts at Walayar, Manjeshawaram and Muthanga in the state. Lack of sufficient travel documents, and abrupt change in norms led to the chaotic situation. After reports claimed that no more pass will be issued, more people without travel documents turned up at the check-posts.

Walayar check-post on the edge

People, including those without the travel pass, swarmed the Walayar check-post in Palakkad district on Friday. The social distancing norms were flouted as people thronged the help desk.

Around 340 people, who arrived without pass even from red zone areas, were excluded, leading to a volatile situation.

Some people had applied for the pass but turned up before it was issued.

As the crowd increased, even those with pass could not be allowed to go through.

Chaos reigns at Kerala check-posts as returnees arrive in droves
Health officials an policemen stop vehicles at the Tamil Nadu-Andra Pradesh interstate border during a government-imposed lockdown as a preventive measure against the COVID-19 coronavirus, on outskirts of Chennai on March 24, 2020. (Photo by Arun SANKAR / AFP)

Then after holding discussions with the Collector, four temporary counters were set up to issue pass and allow entry for these people, easing the situation. Four counters will be opened on Saturday.

Stranded at Manjeshwaram

Hundreds of people, including students, were stranded at the Manjeshwaram check-post in Kasaragod as they did not have the travel pass. Only half the people in a group of 126 students from Moodabidri in Karnataka had pass. They were caught unawares as the decision to give spot registration was changed abruptly. They are given food from a centre of the district administration at the check-post. Some people had reached on Thursday morning. Most people do not have vehicles of their own. Nor do they have any means to return.

Asked to return at Muthanga

Fifty people, who had arrived at the Muthanga check-post in Wayanad, were asked to return to the states from where they had commenced the journey. The registration system was stopped the other day. Both pass and registration for vehicles are necessary to be allowed entry into the state. If the vehicles are not registered, then those with pass will not be allowed to cross over into the state. And those without pass, arriving in registered vehicles, will also be asked to return.

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