The lockdown in Kerala has been extended till June 16. The lockdown, which began on May 8, was set to end on June 9, Wednesday. However, in a statement, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayanâ€™s office said that the lockdown has been extended as the transmission of the COVID-19 has not been contained as anticipated. On June 7, Monday, the state officially recorded 9,313 COVID-19 cases. A total of 70,569 samples were tested in the last 24 hours.
Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said that the restrictions will be more strict and all shops will be closed on weekends, June 12 and 13. The existing restrictions will continue till June 16. Shops selling essentials, raw materials for industries and building materials will be allowed to open till June 16. Banks will continue to operate on alternative days â€” Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Stationery shops, jewellery shops, shoe shops, textiles and opticals will be allowed to open on June 11, for a day, from 7 am to 7 pm. The vehicle showrooms can start functioning for the maintenance works from June 11, but sale and other operations will not be allowed.
The CM also said that all examinations will be conducted only after June 16. Government and partially-government institutions, public sector, corporations and commissions will start functioning from June 17 with 50% staff. Certificates needed for NEET exams will be made available online through e-district portals.
In the COVID-19 situation evaluation meeting on June 7, CM also asked officials to study whether respiratory therapists should be appointed in the hospital wards where COVID-19 patients in C category are being treated. It was also decided to scientifically study coronavirus infection among children. C category patients are those who have breathlessness, chest pain, respiratory distress, children with influenza like illness, and patients who are worsening with underlying chronic conditions.
Pinarayi Vijayan has also directed the officials to make use of the private hospitals in districts to carry out the vaccination drive and said these hospitals will be given appropriate assistance. As per the Kerala High Court order, lawyers and other officials will be listed under priority in vaccination. Private bus employees will also be considered under priority list.