Two days ahead of the deadline of the current phase of the lockdown in Tamil Nadu, Chief Minister MK Stalin has on Friday announced that the lockdown will be extended in the state for a week till June 21. The current phase of the lockdown ends by Monday -June 14th and the state will go into the renewed phase of the lockdown from June 14 to June 21 amid battling the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.
As the state has been reporting a sharp decline in the COVID-19 cases, the government has been gradually relaxing the tight restrictions and while the current phase has come with significant ease from the lockdown in the districts where the cases are dropping, the fresh phase of the lockdown extension has been announced with major relaxations across the state with permitting the resumption of various establishments including TASMAC shops.
In a press release, Chief Minister MK Stalin has said that he has ordered to extend the lockdown till 6 am on June 21. The existing relaxations and services will be permitted to function till June 21 and as with the preceding announcement of the extension, the government has poured major relaxations for the fresh phase in 27 districts by concentrating on the rest of 11 districts that are witnessing a surge in the COVID-19 cases.
However, the eleven districts won't be under complete lockdown from June 14 as the government has announced relaxations with the view of the public interest. According to the government, the districts of Coimbatore, The Nilgiris, Tiruppur, Erode, Salem, Karur, Namakkal, Thanjavur, Tiruvarur, Nagapattinam, and Mayiladuthurai are identified as the districts with more cases. In the press release, the Chief Minister said, "Though these 11 districts have more active cases, additional relaxations will be awarded for these districts with SOPs with the view of meeting the public interests." Let's see what is permitted and prohibited in the state from June 14,
Additional relaxations for these 11 districts from June 14:
- Housekeeping services will be permitted with e-registration.
- Electricians, Plumbers, Motor Technicians, and self-employed like carpenters can function from 9 am to 5 pm by visiting the residences of the people who called for the services. E-registration is mandatory but they are not allowed to open their shops.
- Cycle and two-wheeler repair shops will be permitted to function from 9 am to 2 pm in these 11 districts. But such shops are banned from carrying out sales.
- Rental cars and autos can function with e-registration. Rental cars can ply with three people apart from the driver and autos can ply with two people apart from the driver.
- The shops that are repairing agricultural equipment and pump sets are allowed to function from 9 am to 2 pm. Optical shops can also function from June 14 in these 11 districts from 9 am to 2 pm.
- Pottery and handicraft businesses can function from 6 am to 5 pm. The export companies can function in these 11 districts with 25% of the workforce from June 14 by following the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs).
Apart from these 11 districts, the government has allowed additional relaxations for the rest of 27 districts along with the existing relaxations. Below are the following relaxations in 27 districts, including Chennai, from June 14,
- Beauty parlours, salons, and spas can function in these 27 districts from 6 am to 5 pm. These shops can function without air conditioners and with 50% of customers.
- Government parks and the parks that are administered by the municipal administrations and stadiums can function from 6 am to 9 am only for letting people walk and carry out physical exercises.
- The shops that are repairing agricultural equipment and pump sets can function from 9 am to 5 pm. They are not entertained to carry out sales. Optical shops can also function from June 14 in these 11 districts from 9 am to 2 pm.
- Pottery and handicraft businesses can function from 6 am to 5 pm. The television, mixie, and grinder repair shops can function in these 27 districts from 9 am to 2 pm. The government has permitted the resumption of TASMAC shops in these districts from 10 am to 5 pm.
- Shops that are selling mobile phones and related products can function from 9 am to 2 pm in these 27 districts. The shops that are selling construction materials can function from 9 am to 2 pm.
- The showrooms that are selling mixies, grinders, and televisions, refrigerators are allowed to function from 9 am to 2 pm. Schools, colleges, and universities are permitted to carry out the administrative works for starting the admission process for the next academic year.
- The export companies that are already functioning in these 27 districts can function with 50% of the workforce. All the other industries can function with 33% of the workforce.
- IT Companies and outsourcing companies can function either with 20% of the total workforce or with a maximum of ten employees from June 14.
- Housing Finance Companies, Non-Banking Financial Companies, and Insurance Companies can function from June 14 with 33% of the workforce.
On the front of what's not permitted, the government has banned public and private road transportation and people who are travelling between the districts must get e-registration. They are only allowed to travel for emergencies like medical emergencies and deaths. The government has also banned religious, political, cultural, and sporting events, and re-opening the places of worship and theatres.
The Chief Minister has instructed all the establishments to adhere to the SOPs like using hand sanitisers and to temperature-check the employees and customers with thermal screening equipment. The employees and customers must wear masks and must observe physical distancing. MK Stalin has appealed to the people to extend their co-operation to the government by following the guidelines to beat the COVID-19 pandemic.