Tamil Nadu government has announced that the COVID-19 lockdown across the State was being extended till August 31 with fresh relaxations both for areas under Chennai City Police and in other parts of the State.
In a statement, chief minister Edappadi K Palaniswami said the government would implement intense lockdown in the state on all Sundays in August, with no relaxations.
“The lockdown extension is done based on views expressed by the district collectors during a video-conference on Wednesday and public health experts on Thursday, also in consultation with the senior ministers,” the CM said.
As for areas under the Chennai City Police jurisdiction, the Chief Minister said groceries and provision stores which were earlier allowed to operate between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m., would be allowed to operate till 7 p.m. Other shops allowed to operate earlier between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. too would be allowed to remain open till 7 p.m.
“E-commerce companies are allowed to ship both essential and non-essential goods,” the Chief Minister said. Restaurants and tea shops would be allowed to take in customers up to 50% of their seating capacity between 6 a.m. and 7 p.m. Restaurants could be allowed to offer parcel services between 6 a.m. and 9 p.m., like before, he added.
The government has decided to allow public worship in small temples in panchayats, town panchayats and municipalities with annual income of less than Rs 10,000 as per the standard operating procedure issued earlier. It is also permitted at small mosques, darghas, churches and other religious places.
As for transport, present conditions would prevail for rail and air traffic. “The e-passes have to be obtained from District Collectors/Commissioner of Greater Chennai Corporation when moving between districts and into Tamil Nadu, like before,” he said.