The Tamil Nadu government on Monday extended the coronavirus lockdown across the state by another month till July 31. A complete lockdown will remain in place till July 5 in Madurai and Greater Chennai Police limits, including Chennai, Kanchipuram, Chengalpattu and Thiruvalluvar districts.
The state, which is the second-worst affected from the contagion in the country after Maharashtra, recorded its highest single-day rise in cases on Monday. A total of 3,949 people tested positive, taking the state’s tally to 86,224.
“Total lockdown will continue in Chennai, Madurai and surrounding areas till July 5,” the Tamil Nadu government said in an order, according to NDTV. “From July 6 to July 31, Chennai will revert to pre June 19 relaxed lockdown. From July 6, Madurai will revert to pre June 24 relaxed lockdown.”
The state had initially announced partial relaxations to the lockdown from June 1 as part of “Unlock 1”. However, it later re-imposed a “maximum restricted lockdown” in Chennai and three neighbouring districts – Kancheepuram, Chengalpattu and Tiruvallur – from June 19 to June 30 to curb the spread of the coronavirus. Restrictions were also put in place at Madurai and nearby areas from June 24 to 30, in view of high number of cases.
Intra-district bus operations, both private and public, will be suspended between July 1 and July 15, according to The Hindu. While private vehicles will not require passes for movement within the state, the e-pass system for inter-state and inter-district movement will continue. A“complete lockdown” across Tamil Nadu on Sundays will also continue. However, the government relaxed restrictions to allow resumption of business activities in most parts of the state from July 1.
The decision on extending the lockdown came hours after an expert committee, set up to advise the Tamil Nadu government on tackling Covid-19, favoured the implementation of scenario-specific restrictions in different parts of the state instead of a complete lockdown.
Earlier on Monday, the Maharashtra government extended lockdown measures till July 31. Nagaland also announced that the lockdown in the state will be extended with necessary relaxations till July 15.