COVID-19: Restrictions on movement of people continue in Kashmir
Srinagar: Restrictions to contain the spread of coronavirus continued in Kashmir for the 38th consecutive day on Saturday, even as Divisional Commissioner Pandurang K Pole appealed to the people to follow lockdown guidelines during the holy month of Ramzan, officials said.
The security forces have sealed off main roads in most places in the valley and erected barriers at several other places to check the unwanted movement of the people and to enforce the lockdown, they said.
The administration has said the essential services, including healthcare, have been exempted from the restrictions, while otherwise, only persons with valid movement passes are being allowed passage.
The declared containment or red zones across the valley have been sealed to ensure strict adherence to the standard operating procedure.
The markets across the valley were shut and public transport was off the roads with only pharmacies and groceries allowed to open, the officials said. Educational institutions across Kashmir were closed, while all public places, including gymnasiums, parks, clubs and restaurants, were shut down more than a week before the nationwide lockdown was announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
While the prime minister announced the country-wide lockdown on the evening of March 24, the Union Territory administration here on March 22 had announced a lockdown across Jammu and Kashmir till March 31 as part of its efforts to curb the spread of coronavirus.
However, restrictions were first imposed in many parts of the valley on March 19 to contain the spread of the virus infection.
The measures were taken after the detection of the first positive case of coronavirus in the valley.
Meanwhile, the Kashmir divisional commissioner greeted people on the beginning of the holy month of Ramzan and appealed to them to stay home and follow the lockdown measures.
“In this holy month, we should pray to Allah to combat coronavirus infection instantly so that the stranded life across the valley will again come on track and also enhance the spirit of peace and harmony across Kashmir division,” Pole said in a statement issued here late Friday night.
He said in view of the coronavirus outbreak, the divisional administration has imposed lockdown for the safety of the general public and religious leaders had also appealed to people to pray five times a day at home during the month of Ramzan so that the chain of coronavirus infection is broken.
“Follow lockdown measures in letter and spirit, stay home and adopt the health guidelines regarding coronavirus seriously besides, wash your hands properly before breaking fast,” Pole said.
The total number of positive cases in Jammu and Kashmir has reached to 454, even as six patients have died and 109 have recovered. More than 65,000 people have been kept under surveillance, including those who are either in government established quarantine facilities or in home isolation.
“Till date 65,722 travellers and persons in contact with suspected cases have been enlisted for surveillance which include 6,162 persons in home quarantine, including facilities operated by government, 260 in hospital quarantine, 340 in hospital isolation and 11,970 under home surveillance. Besides, 46,985 persons have completed their surveillance period,” the officials said.