Unlock 1: States differ on travel, quarantine protocols
The Centre on Saturday released details of the first of a three-phase plan--Unlock 1.0--to lift stringent restrictions imposed over two months ago to stop the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic.Updated: Jun 02, 2020 04:22 IST
Hyderabad/ Thiruvananthapuram: Andhra Pradesh and Kerala on Monday decided to continue with the requirement of electronic passes for entry into the states even as the Centre’s fresh guidelines allowed unrestricted interstate movement from June 1.
The Centre on Saturday released details of the first of a three-phase plan--Unlock 1.0--to lift stringent restrictions imposed over two months ago to stop the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic. Places of worship, shopping malls, hotels and restaurants can also open from June 8.
Hundreds of people from Telangana on their way to Andhra Pradesh were sent back because they did not have electronic passes. There was much confusion until 11 am on Monday when Andhra Pradesh police chief Gautam Sawang issued a statement saying restrictions on interstate movement would remain in force “till a further decision is taken”. The statement said all those seeking to come to Andhra in private vehicles should obtain an e-passes and undergo medical tests.
“Those seeking to come from less coronavirus-affected states will be sent to home quarantine. Those coming from highly-affected states will be sent to institutional quarantine for seven days and they have to undergo tests for Covid-19. If they test positive, they should be sent to hospitals and if they test negative, they would have to be home quarantined for another seven days,” Sawang said.
Kerala announced a series of measures to ease the Covid-19 lockdown even as curfew in containment areas (121) until June 30 will continue and there will be no entry into the state without passes. “...people who come for brief visits and for business are exempted but they will have to produce travel details. We cannot take chances now. More than 75% of the state’s [Covid-19] cases are imported,” said chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan. He added interstate travellers will have to obtain passes.
Vijayan said a decision on religious places and restaurants will be taken after June 8 in consultation with the Centre. “In containment areas, the lockdown will be complete. It will be a curfew. There is no room for any complacency in such areas,” he said.
The government has allowed marriage functions but guests should not exceed 50.
Odisha said it will impose a weekend lockdown in 11 of the state’s 30 districts, where Covid-19 cases have surged. The highest single-day spike of 156 cases pushed the state’s tally to 2,104 on Monday.
Odisha chief secretary Asit Tripathy said everything in these 11 districts will remain shut over weekends except hospitals, nursing homes, medical stores and fuel stations. He added the cases have risen because of the migrant workers, who have returned from Covid-19 hotspot states like Maharashtra and Gujarat. Tripathy said the workers account for 95% of the new Covid-19 cases in quarantine centres.
States like Goa and Madhya Pradesh said they have adopted the guidelines fully and allowed interstate travel without passes and reopening of stand-alone shops. These states would decide on opening restaurants, malls, gyms and religious places on June 8 as per the Centre’s order.
Goa chief minister Pramod Sawant said they will grant all relaxations the Centre has allowed. “Most activities have started in Goa except for restaurants, hotels, malls, gyms. We believe that at least restaurants, malls and gyms should start with social distancing norms,” Sawant had earlier said.
Himachal Pradesh chief secretary Anil Khachi said hotels have been opened only for non-tourism purposes for businesspersons and those coming on official tours. He added other than them, only residents of Himachal can book rooms there. Khachi said for the interstate travellers, seven-day institutional quarantine would continue.