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New ordinance to empower Kerala with more powers to contain coronavirus

Under the ordinance, the government can shut down the borders, control the public and private transport facilities, form guidelines for social restrictions and control or ban public gatherings

Gireesh Babu  |  Chennai 

Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan at Parliament House in New Delhi on Friday Photo: PTI
Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan. Photo: PTI

has decided to introduce Kerala Epidemic Diseases Ordinance 2020, giving more powers to the government to control the events organised by the public, individuals and groups, in order to contain spread of Covid-19 in the State.

Under the ordinance, the government can shut down the borders, control the public and private transport facilities, form guidelines for social restrictions and control or ban public gathering at public places or religious institutions. It can also control the working of government offices, educational institutions, private firms, factories, shops, workshops, godowns among others.

As per the ordinance, the government can also impose time restrictions on essential services. Violation of these restrictions could be punishable with two years of imprisonment or Rs 10,000 penalty or both. Police can take action against such violations directly.

"The Ordinance is to adapt strict and effective measures to contain the spread of the communicable diseases. A cabinet meeting held today have decided to recommend the Governor to issue the Ordinance," said State Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan. The cabinet also decided to shut down all beverages shops and toddy shops in the State, under the lock-down.

Today nine more Covid-19 positive cases has been confirmed, including four from Dubai, one each from UK and France. With this, the total Covid-19 cases reported in the state to 118. Of the total reported cases 12 have already recovered, including six today. A total of 76,542 individuals are under observation, of which 76,010 are in home quarantine. 532 are hospitals. Today 122 people were admitted in hospitals. 118 have got virus till now 91 are NRIs, 8 are foreigners, 19 got through contact. A total of 12 have been discharged so far.

The state government has announced lockdown with the number of Covid-19 positive cases crossing 100 this week.

First Published: Wed, March 25 2020. 20:10 IST
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