CHENNAI: Amid a spike in COVID-19 cases, marking a second wave in the state, the Tamil Nadu government on Thursday imposed new restrictions to contain the spread of the infection. An official release here blamed the failure of the public to wear masks and maintain physical distancing in public places for the surge in cases.
Here are the new restrictions that will come into effect from April 10:
Public worship will be permitted in religious places only till 8pm.
E-pass will continue to be implemented for those travelling from other states and countries.
Retail outlets in Koyambedu wholesale vegetable and fruit market in Chennai and whole vegetable and fruit markets in other parts of the state will not function from April 10.
Complete lockdown will be enforced without any relaxations in containment zones across the state.
No commuter will be allowed to stand in Metropolitan Transport Corporation and private buses in Chennai. Similarly, commuters will not be allowed to stand in buses to Puducherry, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka.
All shops, including vegetable and grocery shops, shopping malls, all showrooms and textile and jewellery stores (big format stores), will be permitted only with 50% capacity till 11pm.
Restaurants and tea shops will be allowed to function with 50% sitting capacity till 11pm. Restaurants can have parcel service only till 11pm.
Recreation clubs will be permitted with 50% capacity.
Entertainment parks/amusement parks, conference halls, zoological parks and museums will be permitted with 50% capacity.
All cinema halls, multiplexes with one or more screens and those in shopping malls will be permitted with 50% capacity.
Social, political, educational, entertainment, sports, cultural and other events in indoor stadiums will be permitted with a maximum of 200 persons.
Marriage events will be allowed with a maximum ceiling of 100 people. Fifty people can participate in funerals.
Sports stadiums and playgrounds will be permitted without an audience. Sports training will alone be permitted in swimming pools.
Business to business process will alone be permitted in exhibition halls.
TV serial and film shooting will be permitted, but the management should ensure the crew and cast get RT-PCR tests.
The government will strictly ensure that cabs/taxis have only three passengers other than driver being implemented since July 1. Similarly, two passengers other than driver will be permitted in autorickshaws.
An official release here said imposing certain restrictions became inevitable since the infection is spreading speedily. A ban on international flight services will continue except on certain routes. Full lockdown measures will continue in containment zones.
The release also pointed out that in India, COVID-19 cases are increasing in the states of Maharashtra, Punjab, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Karnataka, Chhattisgarh and Delhi. In Tamil Nadu too, the infection is going up in some districts due to functions, festivals, meetings etc., and due to the failure of people to maintain physical distancing and wear masks in public places.
The active COVID-19 cases that stood at 13,070 on March 28 had gone up to 27,743 on April 7. The Tamil Nadu government has been taking measures to contain the spread of the infection and on an average, 80,000 RT-PCR tests are being done across the state. Besides, increased and aggressive testing is being conducted in containment zones.