Lockdown-like weekend curbs in Kerala: What's allowed and what's not

No bar on essential activities as Kerala set to start weekend shutdown

The proposed restrictions on weekends in Kerala as part of the Covid-19 containment measures will be similar to a lockdown, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said on Friday.

Briefing the pandemic situation in the state to the media in Thiruvananthapuram, the chief minister said a decision on the restrictions to be imposed on the other days will be taken in consultation with other political parties.

"People should stay home tomorrow and day after tomorrow. All unnecessary programmes and journeys should be avoided," Vijayan said.

Marriages scheduled for Saturday and Sunday can be conducted. Maximum 75 people are allowed to attend marriages to be conducted inside halls and 150 in open spaces. The chief minister urged the people to reduce the number of attendees as much as possible. Those travelling to attend weddings should carry with them identity proof and invitation card.

Only 50 people are allowed to attend funerals.

People are allowed to travel to attend marriages and funerals and to visit doctors and close relatives who are ailing. However, they should carry with them a self-prepared affidavit. There is no prescribed format for the affidavit.

Those travelling by trains and flights should produce tickets, boarding pass and identity proof during police checks.

Restaurants are allowed to conduct home delivery during weekend. People who go out to buy food have to carry the required affidavit. Fish vendors are allowed to sell fish at doorsteps. The vendors must wear face masks.

The higher secondary examinations on Saturday will take place as scheduled. Parents who drop the children at schools should return immediately. They should come back only after the examinations, the CM said.

What is allowed and not on weekend

Businesses selling food items such as vegetables, fruits, milk, fish and meat, will be allowed to function till 7.30pm. Dining-in has been banned in restaurants, though they can offer food parcels till 9 pm. Home delivery is also allowed.

There won’t be any restrictions on goods and public transport, including long-distance buses, trains and flights. Private vehicles and taxis ferrying bus-train-air passengers will be allowed, but will have to show their travel documents on demand.

Kochi: Fifty six days after operations came to a complete standstill the Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) commenced its bus and water services on May 20, 2020. The state government had cleared the operation of only intra district services, which is available between 7 to 11 a.m. and then again from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. (Photo: IANS)

All weddings and house-warming ceremonies that are scheduled in advance will be allowed. Such events should be registered in advance on the COVID-19 Jagratha portal (covid19jagratha.kerala.nic.in), besides restricting the number of guests to not more than 75.

Central and State government offices providing essential services will function as usual, and their employees will be allowed to travel. Industries and companies that require to work round-the-clock, and will also be allowed to function. Employees attached to these firms can travel, but should have identity cards.

Information and communications technology service providers and their staff are also exempted from the restrictions. Only essential staff will be allowed to attend IT firms.

Those travelling on emergency, patients and their helpers, and those stepping out to get vaccinated will have to show their ID cards. There are no restrictions on those on exams and COVID-19 duties.

The night curfew (between 9pm and 5am) will continue and strictly enforced. Arrangements will be made to ensure food for those observing the Ramadan fast. They can hold prayers even after 9pm by strictly adhering to the COVID-19 protocol.

KSRTC reschedules operations

Meanwhile, the Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) streamlined its operations to suit the government-imposed curbs, including night curfew.

Though the Corporation has been seeing a significant dip in passengers, it will operate more schedules during the busy hours between 7am and 7pm.

Maximum number of ordinary and short-distance fast passenger schedules will operate between 7am and 7pm. Schedules will ply on profitable routes even after 7pm. Double duty will be restricted to only 20 per cent of the staff.

KSRTC will operate 60 per cent of its long-distance schedules at night, besides allowing ordinary service according to the demand. Long-distance schedules will ply during daytime also.

Religious places

Syro Malabar Church: Instructions issued by the state and district authorities to be followed

Latin Catholic Church: Regulations issued by the district authorities will be applicable to all events including wedding, baptism and holy communion ceremonies. The regulations issued in the first phase of COVID-19 will continue in the Kollam diocese. More than 50 individuals will not be permitted in the church for Sunday prayers and not more than 4 can gather in churches belonging to containment zones. 

Jacobite Church: Ceremonies like weddings and baptism should be avoided if possible. If not, they must be held with minimum guests. All other festivities involving the public have been suspended temporarily.The priest and other assistants must wear a mask at the altar. The number of people participating in the holy communion will be limited. 

CSI Church: The number of people will be limited at all CSI churches from 25 April to May 31. "All believers are requested to make use of the online services made available by the church," Bishop Dr Malayil Sabu Koshy informed. The church must be disinfected after the first service. Only family members will be allowed to participate in weddings abnnd funeral ceremonies. Annual meeting need not be summoned during this periods. Reports including the hard copy of the annual report and budget may be submitted before May 19. 


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