COVID-19: Good news for morning walkers as Odisha announces next phase of lockdown till July 1

All shops except malls in 17 districts of Southern and Western Odisha - undivided Ganjam, Kandhamal, Koraput, Kalahandi, Balangir, Sambalpur and Sundargarh - can transact business from 6 am to 5 pm

Published: 16th June 2021 04:04 PM  |   Last Updated: 16th June 2021 04:04 PM   |  A+A-

People flout social distancing norms while buying fruits on the eve of Sabitri Brata, at Indradhanu market in Bhubaneswar. (Photo | Biswanath Swain, EPS)

By Express News Service

BHUBANESWAR: With a marked improvement in the COVID-19 situation and rapid fall in the test positivity rate in many districts, the state government on Wednesday announced further relaxations in commercial activities while extending the partial lockdown for two more weeks till 5 am on July 1, 2021.

"After taking all parameters concerning the present pandemic situation into consideration, the state government decided to impose a partial lockdown across the state from the morning of June 17, 2021," said Chief Secretary Suresh Chandra Mahapatra.

The current phase of the lockdown is scheduled to end on the morning of June 17. He said the districts have been divided into two categories. Districts with test positivity rate (TPR) of 5 per cent or less are kept in Category-A while those with more than 5 percent TPR are in Category-B.

All shops except shopping malls in 17 districts of Southern and Western Odisha - undivided Ganjam, Kandhamal, Koraput, Kalahandi, Balangir, Sambalpur and Sundargarh - are allowed to transact business from 6 am to 5 pm. However, the restrictions on opening of hotels, restaurants, cinema halls, gyms, swimming pools and salons will continue to stay, he said, adding that night curfew will continue across the state.

The Chief Secretary said that shops selling essential goods in 13 districts mostly from coastal districts and coming under the second category have been allowed to open from 6 am to 1 pm against the existing timing of 7 am to 11 am. Keeping in view the livelihood of milk farmers, the government has decided to open sweet shops during these limited hours. They are only allowed to give parcels.

Similarly, street vending of food for takeaway is allowed in the 17 districts falling under Category-A. Automobile sale and service, sale of cycle and other livelihood activities exempted from restriction are allowed to function.

There is good news for morning walkers and joggers. The restrictions imposed on them have been lifted but parks and gyms will remain closed. The Chief Secretary said that all essential services, transportation of goods, industrial and construction activities will continue without any hindrance.

The restrictions on public transport, marriage ceremonies, meetings, social gatherings and opening of temples will remain in force till the lockdown is lifted. While lifting restriction on inter-state movement with Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand, the state government has opened border check posts which were so far sealed. However, the check posts on the Andhra Pradesh and West Bengal border will not
be allowed for vehicular movement except good transport till the COVID situation improved in the two neighbouring states, Mahapatra said.

Government and private offices have been allowed to run with 50 percent of their employees.


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