The Tamil Nadu government has extended the lockdown in the state on Saturday (June 5) for another week till June 14, and eased some of the lockdown restrictions in most districts, including Chennai. However, the government has laid out a different set of relaxations for 11 hotspot districts, which are reporting a high number of cases, said media reports.
The present lockdown ends at 6 am on June 7. According to a state government press release, even as the lockdown has been extended, some of the restrictions that had been imposed will be lifted in 27 districts across Tamil Nadu, including Chennai.
“However, certain relaxations have also been extended to 11 districts in the state, (where the COVID spread has not come down), to meet the essential requirements of the people, said Chief Minister M K Stalin in a statement, reported The Times of India.
The districts are Coimbatore, the Nilgiris, Tirupur, Erode, Salem, Karur, Namakkal, Thanjavur, Tiruvarur, Nagapattanam and Mayiladuthurai.
For example, standalone provision stores, groceries, meat/fish stalls will be allowed to open from 6 am to 5 pm. Roadside fruit and flower vendors can sell their products within this time period, while slaughter houses can open for wholesale business. Government offices are permitted to function with a 30 per cent occupancy.
The other districts meanwhile will enjoy more relaxations. Security agencies, housekeeping in apartments can operate with e-registration, while electricians, plumbers and motor technicians are allowed to work from 6 am to 5 pm. Automobile mechanic and spares shops, electrical goods, hardware stores, stationary shops can open their doors from 6 am to 5 pm.
In a big relief for taxi and auto drivers, they will be allowed with limited passengers, three in taxis and two in autos, to operate with e-registration, said the release.
Export units, who have orders to fulfill has been given the nod to operate with 10 per cent workforce following safety procedures. An e-pass is required from the district collectors to travel to Niligris, Kodaikanal, Yercaud, Yelagiri and Courtallam.
The TN Chief Minister has also advised people not to step out of their homes unless it is absolutely necessary and to walk to a place rather than use a vehicle.
On Friday (June 4), Tamil Nadu registered 22,651 new COVID-19 cases and 463 related fatalities, which took the state’s tally to 21,95,402 and its death toll to 26,128.