Lockdown in Puducherry from 10 to 24 May; shopping complexes, malls to remain shut

Puducherry: With the Union Territory of Puducherry witnessing a surge in coronavirus cases, the territorial government on Saturday imposed a two-week lockdown starting from 10 May, in a bid to curb its spread.

The Secretary to Government (Relief and Rehabilitation), Ashok Kumar, in an order, said the lockdown would be in addition to the night curfew already in force from 10 pm to 5 am the next day.

The lockdown was being imposed as there was no let up in the increased cases of coronavirus in the Union Territory, he said

"The lockdown will be in force for two weeks from 10 May midnight to 24 May," he said in the order.

During the period, beaches, parks, gardens would remain closed to the public, as also all places of worship and religious centres

Petrol bunks, power service and water supply would function and banks would operate till 12 noon. Industries and industrial production would also be permitted.

The order said people should remain indoors and not come out except for permitted and essential activities. Their movement would be subject to verification of the purpose and their identities by enforcement agencies, he said.

Provision shops, vegetable sales outlets, shops dealing with food, groceries, fruits, meat and fish and cattle feed would be allowed till 12 noon without AC facility.

Shopping complexes and malls would not be permitted to function, as also tea shops. Delivery of food and takeaways, medical services and
newspaper distribution would be allowed.

Passenger buses can operate, but with 50 percent occupancy. Taxies can ply, subject to carrying a maximum of three passengers excluding drivers, while autorickshaws would also be permitted with a maximum of two passengers, excluding drivers.

For marriage functions, only 25 people would be allowed, and 20 in funerals.

Stringent action would be taken against those violating the lockdown rules, the order said.

The Union Territory on Saturday logged 1,703 cases and 19 deaths, taking the tally to 70,076 and the toll to 939.