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Ambulances Ferrying Passengers Caught Near Andhra-Telangana Border Amid Lockdown Order

Representative Image.

Representative Image.

Reports have come in of transporters charging Rs 1,000-2,000 per passenger to a trip from Hyderabad to Vijayawada. The trip usually costs Rs 250 during normal situations.

Hyderabad: A few private transport owners have been caught in the twin Telugu states trying to ferry passengers amid the shutdown in the guise of patients in ambulances.

Both Andhra Pradesh and Telangana governments have announced strict lockdown measures to fight the coronavirus that has already claimed seven lives with at least 415 positive cases in the country and have barred all non-essential travel.

Soon after, some people decided to turn their vehicles into ambulances and transport people around the state for a hefty sum.

Reports have come in of transporters charging Rs 1,000-2,000 per passenger to a trip from Hyderabad to Vijayawada. The trip usually costs Rs 250 during normal situations.

A number of ambulances were caught after the government closed inter-state borders and police started checking vehicles at Kodada along the border. The vehicles have been seized and criminal cases have been filed against their owners.

The government has warned of strict action against those venturing out without any valid reason during the lockdown that would be enforced from 7pm on Monday to till 6am on March 31.

Telangana Director General of Police M Mahender Reddy said only one person would be permitted to travel on two-wheeler and two persons in a four-wheeler to buy essential commodities in their vicinity.

Vehicles other than those used for transporting essential commodities will be seized and will be handed over to the owners only after March 31.meda