CHENNAI/COIMBATORE: Tamil Nadu seemed to be cruising toward normalcy over the past month, with the number of Covid cases steadily decreasing. But now, with the number of new cases on the rise again, fresh curbs, including shutting of markets and restriction of store timings, have been announced in some places.
Every district, including Tiruchy, Villupuram, Theni, Virudhunagar, Tirunelveli and Dharmapuri, on Sunday announced restrictions on devotees visiting temples.
Meanwhile in Coimbatore, with cases increasing in neighbouring Kerala and also marginally in the district, fresh restrictions were announced. Shops can only remain open between 10 am and 5 pm, and there will be additional restrictions on Sundays, the district administration said. Essential commodities, though, can be sold outside this window. Restaurants can only offer dine-in services between 8 am and 5 pm, as long as they ensure 50 per cent occupancy or less. After 5 pm, takeaway services will be allowed till 9 pm.
Just days ago, Chennai too, faced with a marginal increase in daily cases and test positivity rate, ordered at least 10 major markets and shopping plazas in Chennai, including those in T Nagar, Purasawalkam, Chindadripet and Royapuram, to remain shut for 10 days.
Chief Minister MK Stalin on Sunday said it was worrying to see people thronging shops and markets without masks, and in violation of physical distancing norms. He requested the public not to let their guard down. On July 1, the State had 2,931 active cases. By July 28, the number had fallen to 1,474, before rising again to 1,627 on August 1.
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