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Lockdown comes into force in entire Haryana, 90 arrested for violating orders

Press Trust of India  |  Chandigarh 

Entire Haryana went under lockdown on Tuesday, a day after the state government issued the order to help check the spread of coronavirus, even as police arrested 90 people from across the state for flouting lockdown orders.

The state government had earlier ordered lockdown in Gurugram, Faridabad, Sonipat, Panipat, Jhajjar, Rohtak and Panchkula districts till March 31 but later decided to extend the measure to entire Haryana.

However, all essential and emergency services are exempted, officials said.

"As per reports collected from the field units, more than 60 FIRs have been registered and over 90 people who were not following orders were arrested on Tuesday. Hundreds of challans have been issued and vehicles of violators impounded," a Haryana police spokesperson said in a statement here.

Additional Director General of Police (Law and Order) Navdeep Singh Virk said that adequate numbers of police personnel were deployed at every interstate checkpoint.

DSP-rank officers have been deputed at 10 important entry points on national highways in the state from 8 am to 10 pm everyday till further orders. They will sort out various issues, if they so arise, regarding the lockdown.

Virk said that on the request of Ministry of External Affairs, instructions were issued to all districts to facilitate the evacuation of foreign nationals. Several nationals of Brazil, Israel, Germany and Bhutan were assisted by Haryana Police in being evacuated, he said.

Virk said that DGP Haryana Manoj Yadava kept a close eye on the entire situation across the state and he is in constant touch with the all commissioners of police and district SPs,giving them directives to ensure strict compliance of government orders.

Several people who were facing difficulties in reaching hospital for treatment were transported by the police to various hospitals in the state as well as AIIMS, New Delhi. Simultaneously, on the request of telecom operators, instructions were issued to all districts to facilitate the movement of their engineers and other staff working to maintain services in the state, he said.

At some places, police had a tough time persuading people who were out for non-essential work and sending them back home.

In Bhiwani, at a check barrier, police on Tuesday had to deal with number of two-wheeler riders, many of them who were out for non-essential work.

"We are persuading them and sending them back to their homes," said a police personnel on duty at one such check barrier in Bhiwani.

In Jind, Rewari, Sirsa and Rohtak too, policemen were seen persuading and even warning people who were out non-essential work.

There were couple of instances where police made a group of youngsters to do sit-ups for defying the lockdown order and they warned them not to repeat it.

Police personnel and administration officials could be seen appealing to people to stay indoors at many places across the state.

ADGP Virk posted a series of tweets to explain to people what a lockdown means.

"It is a situation where because of a public health emergency all public and private offices/shops/ establishments are closed by law (except those exempted) and restrictions are imposed on movement of people," Virk said in one such tweet.

On public queries if they can come out to purchase essential items, Virk in another tweet, said, "If urgent you may go to buy essentials to a shop in your locality, either alone or at most be accompanied by one family member after following the social distancing norms."

During the lockdown, all commercial establishments, shops and factories will remain closed, except those dealing in essential commodities like food, groceries, medicines, officials said.

Other essential services such as water supply, sanitation and electricity supply are also exempted from the lockdown, the officials said. "We will ensure that the lockdown is strictly enforced, though essential and emergency services will be maintained," state Home Minister Anil Vij said earlier in the day.

Those violating the lockdown will invite punishment under the law, Vij warned while appealing to people to cooperate with the government.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Tue, March 24 2020. 20:08 IST