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Coronavirus pandemic: Section 144 imposed in Kerala amid spike in COVID-19 cases

News Agencies | Updated on: 3 October 2020, 14:20 IST

The Kerala government has imposed Section 144 of the CrPC from Saturday onwards, in the wake of increasing COVID-19 cases in the state.

The order -- issued by Chief Secretary Vishwas Mehta -- shall come into effect from today till October 31. The assembly of gatherings of more than five persons will not be permitted.

"In light of the surge in the number of COVID-19 cases in the state, public congregations and gatherings pose an impending danger of a super spread of the infection. Hence, an assembly or gathering of more than five people at a time can not be permitted," the order read.

"District Magistrates are directed to assess the ground situation in their districts and use the relevant provisions and orders under Section 144, CrPC to control the spread of the disease. Strict restrictions shall be imposed in containment zones and in specific areas where the spread of the disease is apprehended. Existing relaxations for categories like weddings, funerals etc shall be continued and the District Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) concerned shall issue proceedings, considering the ground situation in their districts," it added.

This shall be effected from 0900 hrs on 3rd October 2020 to 2400 hrs on 31st October 2020.
Thiruvananthapuram district collector issued an order invoking Provisions of Section 144 of the CrPC. The order is in effect till October 31.

Gathering of more than five persons shall be not be allowed in front of any bank, shops, or commercial establishments. People are directed to stay at homes/indoor as far as possible and not to come out for non-essential activities.

All public exams announced before October 2 will be conducted as per schedule. Strict compliance of COVID-19 protocol shall be ensured. All banks shall function following COVID-19 protocols.

In Containment Zones, only essential activities like selling essential groceries, medicines and food items like milk, vegetables, meat, fish will be allowed. The movement of persons in or out of containment zones will not be permitted except for medical emergencies and maintaining the supply of essential goods and services.

Whereas outside containment zones, all indoor gatherings such as social, cultural, political, academic, religious, inaugural functions; shall be limited to 20 participants including religious prayers and funerals. For marriages maximum of 50 persons can be allowed and have to strictly follow social distancing.

Public transport, government institutions, commercial establishments, industries and hospitals can function fully keeping social distancing and break the chain protocols.

However, in the Idukki district, Section 144 has been imposed in towns only and COVID-19 protocols will be continued in all other parts of the district and in the Kasargod district, section 144 has been imposed till October 9.

Kerala on Friday reported its highest single-day spike with 9,258 COVID-19 cases, taking the active tally of people infected with the virus in the state to 77,482.


Also Read: Coronavirus Pandemic: India's COVID-19 death toll surpasses 1-lakh, total cases at 64,73,545

First published: 3 October 2020, 14:20 IST