Coronavirus Lockdown: 16 Booked for Defying Orders & Keeping Shops Open in Maharashtra
The Pimpri Chinchwad district collector had issued an order under the Epidemic Act directing all shops, barring those providing essential services, to remain shut.
A deserted Gateway of India in Mumbai on Thursday. (News18)
Pune: At least 16 shop owners in Maharashtra's Pimpri Chinchwad city faced police action on Thursday for defying the collector's orders to keep their establishments closed in view of the COVID-19 outbreak.
The district collector had issued an order under the Epidemic Act directing all shops, barring those providing essential services, to remain shut.
"We had informed shop owners in Chikhali area to keep establishments that do not come under the essential services category shut," said senior inspector Satish Mane of Chikhali police station.
Despite the announcements, at least 16 shops and establishments, including electronic shops, restaurants and
tea kiosks, remained open on Thursday.
"We have registered a case against 16 shop owners under Section 188 of the Indian Penal Code," he said.
Earlier on Wednesday, the collector had issued an order banning religious events, cultural ceremonies, festivals, fairs, sporting activities in private or public places where five or more people come together.
As per the order, the ban is also applicable to restaurants, eateries, permit rooms, pubs, malls, theatres, swimming pools, schools, colleges and gyms.
However, the order does not apply to establishments that come under essential services such as hospitals, pathology labs, clinics, railway stations, ST stands, airports and last rites.
Meanwhile, entry has been banned at the landmark Haji Ali Dargah (shrine) as well as the popular Mahim Dargah in Mumbai in view of the coronavirus epidemic.
The decision to stop entry at the two shrines till further notice was taken following the Maharashtra government's advice to avoid crowding in public places, said Suhail Khandwani, managing trustee of Mahim Dargah and a trustee of the Haji Ali Dargah.
"People's lives are of paramount importance," he added, asking the devotees to cooperate. Earlier, the famous Siddhivinayak temple in the city had taken a similar decision.
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