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Tamil Nadu announces 'full' lockdown in Chennai, other parts as coronavirus cases rise

Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, Edappadi K. Palaniswami speaks to media at Greater Chennai Corporation Office in Chennai (ANI)Premium
Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, Edappadi K. Palaniswami speaks to media at Greater Chennai Corporation Office in Chennai (ANI)

  • The intense lockdown in Tamil Nadu will be observed from 19 to 30 June
  • This period of 'full lockdown' will cover areas of Chennai, Kanchipuram, Chengalpattu and Tiruvallur districts which come under Metropolitan Chennai Police limits, said Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami

Tamil Nadu government on Monday announced 'maximised restricted lockdown' from 19 to 30 June in four districts of the state, including Chennai in wake of the novel coronavirus outbreak. This also includes full scale shutdown on two Sundays, the government added.

This 12-day period of intense lockdown, starting from 19 June, will cover areas of Chennai, Kanchipuram, Chengalpattu and Tiruvallur districts which come under Metropolitan Chennai Police limits, said Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami.

The announcement came after a cabinet meeting, which included the CM and health experts.

However, the lockdown will have exceptions for hospitals, diagnostic labs, pharmacies, ambulance and hearse vans to function but movement of taxis, auto rickshaws, and other private vehicles will be banned except for medical emergencies, stated the government.

Shops for essential items will open from 6 am to 2 pm, the government added.

The state and Central government offices will work with 33% work force in State and central government offices. Staff in Containment zones, not required to come to work, stated a press release from the state government.

Moreover, Banks to work on 29 and 30 June. ATM will function normally.

Hotels and restaurants can sell parcel only between 6 am to 8 pm.

All Public Distribution System (PDS) shops except shops inside containment zones will continue to function from 8 am to 2 pm, it added.

"Relief of Rs. 1000 will be given to all rice family card holders who reside in the Metropolitan Madras Police Territory in Kanchipuram district. Similarly, Rs. 1,000 will be given to all non-workers and welfare members of various sectors," the statement further added.

Earlier, the state government was advised scaling down lockdown relaxations in order to mitigate virus spread, a member of an expert committee said following a meeting with Palaniswami.

Dr P Kuganantham, a senior epidemiologist and member of the 19-member expert committee on Covid-19 set up by the government, said: "We have given advice (to the government) on cutting down relaxations and (further) prevent the spread of virus and the government will take a decision," as per PTI report.

Tamil Nadu has been witnessing a huge rise in the number of coronavirus cases, especially in the past week.

On Sunday, the state recorded over 1,900 more novel coronavirus cases in a single day for the third day in a row. With over 1,974 patients reporting positive for the virus in 24 hours, Tamil Nadu's Covid-19 count reached 44,661, according to the state's health department.

Along with that, the death toll also increased to 435 after 38 fatalities were recorded since Saturday, it added.

The southern Indian state is one of the worst-hit by the Covid-19 virus after Maharashtra, which currently has more than a lakh positive coronavirus cases.

However, until Sunday, Tamil Nadu and Delhi also saw an explosion of new cases.

India currently has more than 3.32 lakh coronavirus cases after states added over 11,000positive patients in the last 24 hours. The total number of Covid-19 cases in the country on Monday reached 332,424, while the death toll rose to 9,520 after 307 more fatalities got reported since Sunday, according to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare data.

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