Lockdown 5.0 starts in Tamil Nadu, buses ply in districts

A day after the Centre announced lockdown exit plan ‘Unlock 1’, the Tamil Nadu government on Sunday extended the lockdown from June 1 till June 30. Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami, however, allowed partially opening up of public transport services.

In a statement here, Palaniswami, who held a series of meetings with the district collectors and medical expert panel, said the the lockdown, to control the spread of the coronavirus has been extended till June 30, even as the COVID-19 positive cases increased in the state.

No relaxation has been given to religious places, inter-state bus transport, and Metro and suburban train services. Pubic transport will resume with reduced services from June 1, but buses will not be operated in Chennai, Kancheepurm, Tiruvallur and Chengalpet districts having the highest concentration of COVID-19 cases in the state.

“All districts will be divided into 8 zones. E-pass not necessary for movement. Public transportation restricted in 7 zones of Kanchipuram, Chengalpattu and Thiruvallur district and 8 zones of Chennai,” the government said.

All the private companies outside Chennai limit are allowed to operate with its full strength, while companies in City limit should function with 50 percent of its workforce. The private companies include large scale factories and production plants.

The restrictions of public gathering at temples and other worship places, amusement parks, tourist locations, beaches, parks and entertainment areas will stay. School and colleges will remain shut till June 30.

While call taxis and autorickshaws would be allowed to ply with a maximum of three and two passengers respectively from today, non-air-conditioned restaurants and tea shops would be permitted to offer dine-in service with 50 per cent seating capacity from June eight and till then only takeaways were allowed.