With the second COVID-19 wave threatening to swell into dangerous proportions, Kerala government will put serious curbs on public life from April 20. There, however, will not be a total shutdown. Public transport, including freight movement, will not be curbed.
The decision was taken at a high-level meeting held in Thiruvananthapuram on Monday. Night curfew, from 9pm to 5am, will be the most stringent measure. For the moment, the decision is to keep the curfew in force for two weeks.
Already shops and establishments, except emergency services like medical shops, will have to shut down by 9pm. Night curfew is seen as an effective way to stop the spread of the virus going by the experience of such a measure during the first wave. There will be extensive, even intrusive, police checking at junctions.
The functioning of cinema theatres, which were slowly coming out of the COVID-induced slump, will be curbed. From April 20, theatres will have to down curtains by 7pm. This time restriction applies to malls, too.
Offices, both private and government, have been asked to get back to the 'work from home' arrangement that was put in place during the first phase of the outbreak.
Private tuition centres have also been asked to close down. The direction is to conduct these tuition classes online.
Reflecting the urgency, Thrissur Pooram will be limited to mostly the rituals. Public will not be allowed entry into the 'pooram' grounds.