Even as India observes the 14 hour Janta Curfew called by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, several states have announced complete or partial lockdown in the wake of Wuhan Coronavirus outbreak. Today the union government had asked the states to enforce lockdown in 75 districts where Covid-19 positive cases were reported and had also advised that states can expand the area under lockdown based on their assessment.
As of now, the following states have announced complete or partial lockdown:
- West Bengal
- Uttar Pradesh
Odisha was the first state to announce near total lockdown yesterday. The lockdown has been announced in five districts and seven towns in the state from the 22nd March to 29th March. Majority of people who recently returned from foreign countries belong to these areas, that’s why initially these areas have been put under lockdown. The five districts are, Khurdha, Cuttack, Ganjam, Kendrapada, Angul, and the seven towns are Puri, Rourkela, Sambalpur, Jharsuguda, Balasore, Jajpur Road and Jajpur Town and Bhadrak.
Earlier today, Rajasthan and Punjab governments announced complete lockdown of the states till 31st March. In Rajasthan, all government and private offices will cease operations, and malls, shops, factories and public transport will also remain shut. The borders or Rajasthan with other states will also be sealed. Only essential services and medical facilities will remain open to the public during this period.
Punjab government also announced that shops, Commercial establishments selling non-essential items will remain closed while factories involved in the manufacture of essential items will remain operational.
Union territory Chandigarh announced lockdown today to prevent spread of Covid-19. All ‘non-essential establishments’, including offices, schools, colleges, factories and other business establishments in the city will remain closed till March 31. All public transport has also been suspended.
Uttarakhand chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat informed on Twitter that the state will be under lockdown till 31st March. He announced that all transport in the state, both local and interstate, will remain suspended.
In order to win this war against Corona, state has decided to enforce lockdown until 31st March. During this period, all transport- local and interstate- will remain suspended. All the essential services are being kept out of the ambit of this lockdown. #IndiaFightsCorona— Trivendra Singh Rawat (@tsrawatbjp) March 22, 2020
West Bengal government has announced lockdown in the state from 23rd March to 27th March. During this period, no public transport including taxis, auto-rickshaws will be permitted, except visit to and from hospitals, airports, railway stations, bus stations, and vehicles carrying food and essential commodities. All shops, offices, factories etc will also remain shut.
North-eastern state Nagaland has also announced restrictions due to the threat of Covid-19 from the midnight of March 22. All inter-state entry points will be sealed and no vehicle carrying passengers will be allowed to enter the state, while all commercial passenger vehicles, both public and private, will not ply on roads.
Two days after ordering the closure of non-essential offices in Maharashtra, the Uddhav Thackeray government today announced lockdown in the state. Section 144 of the IPC has been imposed in the state from tomorrow, and both private and public buses will stop operating.
Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal has also announced complete lockdown in the state. All public transport like taxis and autos will be not allowed to ply, while a limited number of DTC buses will operate to allow people involved with essential services to move. All non-essential shops and religious places will remain closed in Delhi till 31st March. Construction activities will also remain suspended, and no international and domestic flights will be allowed to travel from and to Delhi during this period. All borders of the state will be sealed, only vehicles carrying essential items will be allowed to enter. Restaurants will be allowed only for take way and food delivery services.
Delhi government has also imposed section 144 in the state, prohibiting gathering of people in the entire state. Demonstrations, processions, protests etc also prohibited, which is important given that anti-CAA protests by Muslims continue in the capital ignoring the threat of the deadly pandemic. Those who violate the restrictions will be punishable under section 188 of the IPC. The prohibitory order comes into effect from 9 PM tonight and continue till 31st March, which means the anti-CAA protests at Shaheen Bagh and other places in Delhi will have to be called off, if the administration is able to impose the restriction on the protesters.
On the evening on 22nd March, Bihar also announced lockdown of the state, shutting all non-essential services till 31st March.
Later in the evening, the Jharkhand government also followed suit and ordered complete lockdown in the state. All government offices not related to essential services, all shops except shops selling essential daily use items, all public transport will remain shut in the state till 31st March. The government has also banned the assembly of more the five people at a place and asked the citizens to remain in their homes.
Some other states have announced partial lockdown in selected districts. In Gujarat, Amdavad, Surat, Vadodara, Rajkot, Gandhinagar and Kutch districts have been put under lockdown, while in Karnataka the restrictions have been imposed in Bangalore Urban, Bangalore rural, Dakshina Kannada, Chikkaballapura, Kalburgi, Mysore, Kodagu, Belgaum, Dharwad. Similarly, in Uttar Pradesh, lockdown has been announced in 15 districts.
Other states where complete lockdown has not been announced, restrictions in large public gatherings have been banned to prevent the spread of Wuhan Coronavirus.
In Assam, city bus services have been suspended from 22nd to 24th March. Several districts in the state have individually imposed section 144 banning large gatherings, festivals etc. Most Bihu committees in the state have announced that there will be no Bihu functions this year, which would have started from 13th April. All states in North East having the Inner Line Permit system has suspended issuing ILPs, meaning people from outside the state can’t enter those states. These states are Manipur, Nagaland, Mizoram and Arunachal Pradesh. Sikkim has also restricted entry of people from outside the state.
Apart from these, 75 districts in the country, where coronavirus positive cases have emerged, have been put under complete lockdown as per the advisory of the union government. Those 75 districts are spread across 22 states.
During lockdowns, all shops selling non-essential items will remain shut. Shops selling groceries and vegetables, milk, medicine and other essential items will be allowed to remain open. While public transport will not work during the lockdown, people will be allowed to travel in their private vehicles, subject to maintaining social distancing and sanitisation protocols. Petrol pumps, banks and ATMs will also remain functioning lockdown period.
22 states and union territories have seen Covid-19 cases so far. Only Goa, Jharkhand, the eight north-eastern states have not reported any case so far. Along with Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu, Andaman, and Lakshadweep.