Coronavirus | New lockdown restrictions come into force in TN

Police and Chennai Corporation personnel are enforcing the new restrictions, which include limited timings for shops and restaurants and limited passengers in public transport

New COVID-19 lockdown restrictions came into force in Tamil Nadu from dawn on Thursday. As per the restrictions, only provisional stores and grocery shops would remain open till noon and restaurants will offer only takeaway services with restricted timings. The restrictions will be in place till the morning of May 20.

In Chennai, police personnel along with staff of the Chennai Corporation are on streets to implement the new restrictions.

As part of the restrictions, government and private offices shall function with a maximum staff strength of 50%. Transport facilities like rail, metro and bus services will be allowed with 50% passengers only. No shops except grocery and vegetable shops without air-conditioning will be allowed to function with 50% customers till noon. Tea shops will be allowed to open till noon.

Auditoriums, open air meetings and cultural events are banned. Only 20 people will be allowed in funerals and 50 persons at weddings.

E-commerce services like Swiggy and Zomato will be allowed to take food from restaurants which will be allowed to function from 6 to 10 a.m, noon to 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Essential services, media, freight and medical emergencies are allowed at all times and the night curfew will continue from 10 a.m to 4 a.m

Deputy Commissioner of Pulianthope S. Rajesh Kannan said, “We have formed teams to implement the regulations effectively. Each police station has sector-wise teams and Inspectors and Sub-Inspectors have been patrolling. Beat officers are also deployed to do rounds on their bikes in their sectors. Our personnel advise shopkeepers and residents to follow all norms. If any violation such as non-wearing of masks or failure to follow physical distancing norms is found, we are imposing fines. If any major violation is noticed, the staff of Chennai Corporation is duly informed for further action.”

Commercial establishments that have been found violating lockdown norms are being locked and sealed by the zonal enforcement teams led by assistant revenue officers of the Chennai Corporation. The teams have members from the police and district collectorate. Iron barricades have been placed on roads and the strength of police personnel has been increased to curb vehicle movement in the suburban areas of the city.

“Our personnel have been on the streets and are repeatedly asking residents and shopkeepers to follow COVID-19 guidelines and extend cooperation to us to implement the new regulations. We are also booking cases for not wearing of masks and failure to follow physical distancing norms,” said Deputy Commissioner K. Prabhakar.

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