The triple lockdown announced by the Kerala government to check the surge in Covid cases in Thiruvananthapuram, Ernakulam, Thrissur and Malappuram, comes into force midnight. Authorities, who have started locking down these districts, have warned strict action against violators and round-the-clock surveillance by even deploying drones. Borders of these four districts will be shut by midnight. District authorities are free to enforce and tweakrestrictions in these regions depending on the situation. For instance, while scheduled banks will function on Monday, Wednesday and Friday in Thiruvananthapuram and Ernakulam; in Thrissur they are open only on Tuesday and Friday.
The current lockdown will continue in the remaining 10 districts.
The state had enforced triple lockdown in Thiruvananthapuram and Kasargod last year.
Here is a sneak peek at how the state enforces triple lockdown and the resultant curbs:
Triple lockdown is a targeted strategy to contain the spread of the diseases. Triple lockdown involves three steps.
The first step is to lock the designated area to ensure that no one entered or no one moved out of it.
Vehicular traffic and movement of the public will be strictly curbed. Relaxations will be applicable only for essential services. Strict surveillance will be carried out at checkposts. Vehicles plying for non-essential purposes will be seized. Those who venture out in groups and flout social distancing norms would be arrested.
Then, lockdown will be clamped in clusters (places) where high number of COVID-19 cases are reported. This is to curb the chances of the disease spread in these places, which are vulnerable due to the presence of a large number of primary and secondary contacts of the infected persons. Mechanisms for delivery of essential items in these zones have been ensured.
The third step is to lockdown residences of infected persons to ensure patients and their immediate contacts stayed inside. This is crucial in checking the community spread. One cop will monitor ten houses and visit the quarantined houses thrice a day. Flying squads will be on duty 24X7 and bike patrols will monitor 25 residences in a locality.
What is allowed?
• Shops dealing with food, groceries, fruits and vegetables, dairy products, meat and fish, animal fodder, poultry and cattle feed, bakeries will be open on alternate days:
Thiruvananthapuram: Monday, Wednesday and Friday. All shops will close including for home delivery purpose by 2pm.
Ernakulam: Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday from 8am to 2pm.
Thrissur: Provision stores and bakeries are allowed to open from 8am till 1pm on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. Shops selling fruits and vegetables can function on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Shops selling meat, fish, chicken and cold storages can open from 7am till 1pm on Saturday.
Malappuram: Open on all days, but holders of ration card number ending in odd numbers can go out for buying essentials on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, while holders of cards ending with even numbers are allowed on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. All shops are to close by 2pm.
• Medical shops, petrol pumps, shops selling life-saving equipment, hospitals and medical equipment can function on all days.
• Fair Price Shops (Ration / PDS /Maveli /Supplyco Shops) and Milk Booths are
permitted to function on all days till 5.
• Restaurants and Hotels will be allowed to function with home delivery services only.
Thiruvananthapuram: From 7 am to 7:30pm
Ernakulam: 8am to 7.30pm
Thrissur: 8am till 7pm
Malappuram: 7am to 7pm
• General Public is advised to buy provisions and vegetables from the shops near their houses and not to travel long distances for the purchase of provisions and vegetables. General public will be prevented from travelling long distances for purchase of essential commodities.
• Airport and flight operations
• Taxis to and from airport and railway station may be arranged/permitted
• Minimum staff on Mobile Service Providers
• Movement of goods vehicles
• Banks, insurance and financial services will function for public with minimal staff on Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 10 am to 1 pm. Cooperative Banks will be open only on Monday and Thursday from 10am to 1pm.
In Malappuram, banks and insurance services can function with minimal staff on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. These establishments can function between 10am and 1pm only. Non-banking financial institutions will remain closed.
• Milk and newspaper distribution shall be completed before 8am.
• E commerce entities and delivery services for essential items shall be permitted to operate from 7am to 2pm on all days.
• Ward committees should take necessary steps for home delivery of food from community kitchens and Janakeeya hotels.
• Media persons travelling to and from the district can do so by showing the id card issued by their organisation or press accreditation card.
• Household helps, Home Nurses and Caregivers shall obtain online pass for their travel. Technicians (on call electrical and plumbing services) shall be permitted after obtaining online travel pass.
• All minor roads to the districts will be closed. These districts will have only one entry and exit points.
• No travel will be allowed. KSRTC depots will remain shut.
• Shops selling non-essential items.
• Private vehicles
• Kochi Metro
• Unnecessary outing from the house, crowding, not wearing a mask, or violating any other Covid protocols
• Interstate road transport of individuals
How did police enforce triple lockdown in Kasaragod for the first time in the state?
The police enforced travel restrictions in Kasaragod in 2020. Authorities barred pillion riding, limited the number of car passengers to just two and asked people not to go out of their homes if there was no emergency. The police also harped on technology to enforce a strict lockdown and ensured free delivery of food and medicines.
The triple lock helped Kasaragod overcome the crisis and check the coronavirus spread.