THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A few lockdown relaxations have been introduced in three buffer zones in the Thiruvananthapuram city corporation. In the Vallakadavu, Valiyathura, and Muttathara regions, fishing has been permitted as long as the catch is sold inside the zones, and the shops will remain open till 5pm every day.“The relaxations in shop timings are being made because of overcrowding. As the shops shut down at 11am, people go only by 10am and they end up not adhering to social distancing norms. So we are changing the regulations in the buffer zones alone,” said Minister Kadakampally Surendran on Friday. All restrictions will continue in the rest of Thiruvananthapuram city corporation, including the critical containment zones and the containment zones.
The minister also said that fake news and propaganda were being spread among people in the Poonthura coastal belt to create confusion. “While the triple lockdown is a difficult situation, we do not have other options at the moment. Mobile units of Supplyco will be deployed in the buffer zones. Fishing should be limited to those who use traditional boats. If there is more fish than that can be sold in the buffer zones, Matsyafeed will collect it. KEPCOs service will be used to sell meat,” said the minister.
Two mobile units under the District Medical Officer have been deployed to ensure that all health-related concerns of the public are addressed. The minister also addressed the claims that rapid antigen tests done in Poonthura region were not conclusive. “All the allegations that the tests don’t give the right results are politically motivated. As a huge number of people are testing positive every day, we have limitations in terms of manpower. However, the best possible care is being given to all patients,” said the minister. Earlier in the day, a group of Poonthura residents had come out in the open violating the lockdown curbs, in order to stage a protest demanding the opening of essential shops in the area.