Kerala government has decided not to impose a complete lockdown, but to continue and implement the existing restrictions. Currently, the state has imposed restrictions on weekends and at night, from 9 pm to 6 am. The decision was taken after an all-party meeting convened by Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Monday.
A complete lockdown would not be feasible, said the political leaders who attended the virtual meeting. A COVID-19 committee in Kerala had reportedly recommended a complete lockdown for at least two weeks, in view of the surge in COVID-19 cases. â€śAll political parties that took part in the meeting were of the opinion that there is no need for a complete lockdown. However, it has been decided to strictly enforce certain restrictions,â€ť Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said on Monday.
Importantly, the political parties also agreed to not organise any major celebrations on May 2, when the results of the Kerala Assembly elections will be announced. â€śOnly counting officials, counting agent of political parties and media persons will be allowed at counting centres. However, they have to produce a negative RT-PCR test report or report of two doses of COVID-19 vaccine,â€ť said CM Pinarayi.
The Chief Minister also announced the list of restrictions that will be in place and details on the vaccination drive.
> The night restrictions will continue from 9 pm to 6 am. No gatherings will be allowed during this time. However, essential services will be allowed during this time.
> Weekend restrictions will continue. Only essential services will be allowed.
> Those organising weddings and housewarming ceremonies must register on the COVID-19 Jagratha portal, under the Festival Entry Registration section.
> Maximum number of people who will be allowed to attend a wedding has been limited from 75 to 50 persons, and 20 persons for funerals. â€śAll functions that will have a huge crowd will be suspended,â€ť CM Pinarayi said.
> Only 50 people will be allowed for Ramadan-related functions. Ramadan in the state started on April 13.
> Functioning of cinema theatres, shopping malls, gymnasium, clubs, swimming pools, bars and outlets for foreign liquors will be temporarily suspended.
> Shops and restaurants can remain till 7.30 pm. Restaurants can open parcel counters till 9 pm.
> Government offices will function with 50% attendance. Government and quasi-government offices will be closed on Saturdays.
> Ration shops will function for a limited period of time.
Migrant workers in Kerala will be provided free vaccine, the CM said. â€śA control room will also be opened for migrant workers. We are discussing if senior citizens can be vaccinated at home,â€ť he said.
Need to remain vigilant
â€śIt is highly likely that Kerala can face the same situation as in north India. There is no that the COVID-19 situation will relax,â€ť warned CM Pinarayi, urging the public to remain vigilant.
On Monday, 21,890 people tested positive for coronavirus in Kerala, taking the active cases to 2.32 lakh. Twenty-eight patients died due to COVID-19 in the state on Monday. A total of 96378 samples were tested.