With roads blocked, people cross Kerala border in boats

Following rise in positive Coronavirus cases in the neighbouring Kasargod district, Dakshina Kannada district administration has closed all the border areas.

Published: 06th April 2020 02:42 AM  |   Last Updated: 06th April 2020 06:33 AM   |  A+A-

Coastal security personnel monitor movement of people along Kerala and Karnataka border areas on Sunday | Express

Express News Service

MANGALURU: Following rise in positive Coronavirus cases in the neighbouring Kasargod district, Dakshina Kannada district administration has closed all the border areas. However, those living in Talapady and surrounding areas allege that the government has failed to monitor people using boats to cross over to Dakshina Kannada via Talapady river.

The matter was brought to the notice of the District Minister Kota Srinivas Poojary on Sunday and he directed Mangaluru police to stop movement of people on boats. Chidanand N Udyavar, a filmmaker, raising the issue told The New Indian Express that over 3,000 in home quarantine in Kasargod reside in areas including touching the state border. “More than 10,000 people in Kasargod district are under home quarantine as a precautionary measure.

The district has reported more than 100 cases already. In such situation, if these residents cross the border using boats there are chances of people from Dakshina Kannada getting affected getting affected,” he said.
Dakshina Kannada Deputy Commissioner Sindhu B Roopesh said the district closed its borders with Kerala and totally suspended vehicular movement including for medical emergencies after six coronovirus positive cases were reported in Kasargod district, which lies on the Dakshina Kannada border. Talapady check-post has been kept open only for transporting essential commodities. Even the interior roads in the villages in the border areas have been closed by the police by dumping soil.

Chidambar further asked that when the district administration could close all the border routes, why boat service was allowed through Talapady river. He also alleged that more than 150 fishermen in Udyavar seashore in Manjeshwar which is just 800 metres away from the Kerala-Karnataka border indulged in fishing. “Neither do they follow social distancing rules nor wear masks. Why aren’t the authorities putting a break to these activities?,” he asked. He added that after seeing his post on Facebook, local police took action and he says that the ground reality is different as both the people and the authorities are not taking the pandemic seriously.

Another resident from Uchila said that despite ban, locals in Uchila which is close to Talapady border indulged in fishing activities. Meanwhile, Dakshina Kannada District Minister on Sunday morning received some complaints about the same, following which he directed Mangaluru police commissioner to look into the issue. Speaking to TNIE, the minister said that already Mangaluru City Police Commissioner Dr P S Harsha has directed coastal security personnel to block the boat service in the river.


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