Covid-19 lockdown strategy in Kerala to change after June 16, CM Vijayan hints at region-wise restrictions
Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Monday said that the Covid-19 lockdown strategy in the state would change from June 16 (Wednesday) and would be implemented region-wise based on the situation, news agency ANI reported. “The lockdown strategy will change after June 16. Depending on the Covid-19 situation, restrictions will be imposed region-wise. It will be implemented by local bodies. Further details about it will be declared tomorrow,” ANI quoted Vijayan as saying, earlier in the day.
The chief minister’s comments came as 7,719 people in the state tested positive for the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) on the day while 161 more people succumbed to the infection, as the death toll climbed to 11,342. Also, the active caseload in Kerala currently stands at 113,817. Meanwhile, 2,610,368 people have recovered from the disease so far, Vijayan also said.
A week ago, on June 7, the Kerala state government extended the then ongoing Covid-19 restrictions till June 16 with complete lockdown on June 12 and 13. However, shops selling essential items and those selling raw materials for industry and construction materials would be allowed to remain functional, the chief minister said.
“Lockdown extended till 16 June all over Kerala. Complete lockdown on 12 & 13 June. Stores selling essential commodities, raw materials for industries (including packaging), construction materials and banks will continue to function as they do now,” the chief minister’s office (CMO) announced in a tweet on June 7.
Strict lockdown in Kerala was imposed on May 8 for the first time since the advent of the second wave of Covid-19 and has been extended thrice since then -- on May 16, 23 and 31. Previously, a triple lockdown was imposed on four districts reporting a very high number of cases namely Thiruvananthapuram, Ernakulam, Thrissur and Malappuram. Later it was revoked as cases declined.
Earlier on June 11, Vijayan also announced a 100-day action plan to help the state overcome the economic slowdown triggered by the second wave of the pandemic. The plan included projects worth ₹2464.92 crore and also aimed to create 77,350 direct and indirect employment opportunities. “Utmost importance will be given to poverty alleviation, elimination of economic and social inequalities, implementation of eco-friendly development perspective and adoption of modern solid waste management practices conducive to a healthy urban life,” news agency PTI quoted Vijayan as saying.