Inter-district travel banned, provision stores to be open: All you need to know about Kerala lockdown

  • No public transport, including buses, taxis and auto rickshaws
  • Provision stores, shops selling milk, fish and meat and also bakeries can remain open
  • Cases to be slapped against those who step out of homes without reason
  • There will be no in-house dining in hotels, only home delivery and parcel service

Thiruvananthapuram: The Kerala government has issued a slew of guidelines that will come into effect when the state goes into total lockdown on Saturday.

The decision to impose a total lockdown came following a steep hike in daily COVID cases observed in the state.

"The government was forced to take this decision as earlier curbs were found to be ineffective," Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said during his sunset briefing on Friday.

The state-wide lockdown will be in effect from May 8 to May 16.

Inter-district travel is not advised during this period, Vijayan said. "However, in case of an emergency, you may submit a self-declaration stating the purpose of travel and a government-approved ID card."

Here's a detailed list of the restrictions:

• There will be no public transport, including buses, taxis, auto-rickshaws and waterways.

• Inter-district travel has been prohibited.

• Shops - only those selling essential services - including ration shops (under PDS) dealing with food, groceries, fruits and vegetables, dairy products, meat and fish, animal fodder, bakeries, poultry and cattle feed can remain open from 6 am to 7.30 pm.

• Cases will be slapped against those who step out of homes without reason.

• Movement of bystanders to the patients to and from the hospitals is allowed provided they show proof issued from the hospital.

• Restaurants can open from 7 am to 7:30 pm. Dining will not be permitted, only home delivery and takeaways encouraged.

• Public will be barred from places of worship. However, daily rituals can be conducted.

• Marriages can be held, provided there are not more than 20 attendees. Advance intimation should be given to the nearest police and details must be registered in the Covid-19 Jagratha portal.

• Funerals should not have more than 20 people. Details should be registered in the Covid-19 Jagratha portal.

• Banks, insurance and financial services can function from 10 am to 1 pm on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

For internal operations, it can still open until 2 pm with minimal staff.

• All educational, training, research, coaching institutions etc. will remain closed.

• All social, political, sports, entertainment, academic, cultural, religious gatherings have been banned.

• Except for employees in essential services, others have been barred from travelling.

• Industrial establishments will remain closed, except the following: manufacturing units of essential commodities, production units which require continuous process, units manufacturing medical supplies including medical oxygen cylinders or cylinders or industrial gas cylinders, units converting industrial gas cylinders into medical oxygen cylinders and manufacturing units involved in exports to other countries.

Services exempted from the lockdown:

• Air and rail services, except Kochi Metro, will remain operational.

• Plying of private vehicles shall be allowed only to the extent of procuring essential commodities, medicines and other activities permitted. Private vehicles for persons travelling for vaccination against COVID-19, movement of persons from other states and countries to destination from the railway station and airport (with proof of ticket) will be allowed.

• For interstate road transport of individuals on emergency purposes, registration on the Covid19 Jagratha portal is mandatory.

• Interstate road transport is allowed for goods and emergency services.

• Use of taxis and auto-rickshaws including Uber, Ola etc will be allowed only for procurement of essential commodities, medicines and for attending to medical emergencies as well as transport from/to airports and railway stations.

Relaxations given to the following departments/services:

• Defence, Central Armed Police Forces, Treasury, Public Utilities (including CNG, LPG, PNG, petroleum & gas retail and storage outlets), Disaster Management, Power Generation and Transmission units, Postal Department and Post Offices, National Informatics Centre, Early-warning Agencies, Food Corporation of India, Indian Meteorological Department, Doordarshan, All India Radio, Central Water Commission, National Cyclone Risk Mitigation Project (MPCS and EWDS works), Airport Authority of India, Airport, Seaport, Railways, Health, Ayush, Revenue, LSGD, Food and Civil Supplies, Industries, Labour, Zoo, Kerala IT mission, Irrigation, Veterinary Services, Social Justice Institutions, Printing, Insurance Medical Services, Police, Excise, Home Guards, Civil Defence, Fire & Emergency Services, Disaster Management, Forest and prisons, District Collectorate and Treasury, Electricity, Water Resources and Sanitation, Visa consular services and agencies, regional passport offices, customs services, Petronet and LNG supply.

• Hospitals and all related medical establishments, including their manufacturing and distribution units, both in the public and private sector such as dispensaries, chemists and medical equipment shops, laboratories, clinics, nursing homes, ambulance etc. will continue to remain functional. Transportation for all medical personnel, nurses, paramedical staff, other hospital services is permitted.

• Agricultural, horticultural, fisheries, plantation and animal husbandry activities will be permitted with minimum movement of persons. Procurement and marketing of perishable agricultural commodities will be allowed.

• Print and electronic media, cable service and DTH, telecommunications, Internet services, broadcasting, IT and IT-enabled services are exempted from the restrictions.

• Delivery of all essential goods including food, pharmaceutical, medical equipment through e-commerce, courier and home delivery will be allowed.

• Capital and debt market services as notified by the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI).

• Cold storage and warehousing services, private security services and supply of hygiene materials.

• Private establishments involved in the production and supply of equipment required to contain COVID-19 including masks, sanitisers, drugs, personal protective equipment's (PPE) etc.

• Co-operative credit societies.

• Repair services of essential equipment including vehicles.

• Toll booths, marine fishing, inland fisheries and aquaculture.

• Palliative care services.

• Hotels, home-stays, lodges and motels which are accommodating tourists and person stranded due to lockdown, medical and emergency staff, air and sea crew.

• Establishments earmarked for quarantine facilities.

• Movement of volunteers connected with the COVID-19 activities, technicians (on-call electrical and plumbing services), pre-monsoon preparedness works, including cleaning works, movement of househelps and caregivers for elderly and bedridden persons will be allowed.

• Construction and maintenance works will be permitted. Transportation of workers to the work site adhering to COVID protocols will also be permitted.

"Wherever exceptions to the above containment measures have been allowed, the organisation and employers must ensure necessary precautions against COVID-19 virus, as well as physical distancing measures as advised by the Health Department from time to time," the government order said.

The order also authorised District Collectors to deploy "Sectorial Magistrates" and "Incident Commanders" in the respective local jurisdictions for the implement the curbs.

"The Incident Commander will be responsible for the overall implementation of these measures in their respective jurisdiction. All other line department officials in the specified area will work under the directions of such Incident Commander," it said.

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