Kerala imposed fresh restrictions on Thursday due to a surge in coronavirus cases in the state. The state government announced cap on indoor functions to 75 from the earlier 100 and for outdoor events, to 150 from the earlier 200. All events are required to be held after approval from the district authorities.
Shops, restaurants, bars and theatres are ordered to be closed at 9pm and shops are urged to promote home delivery services. In cinema halls, second showings has also been curtailed. Buses are allowed to operate but only with passengers sitting.
Kerala chief secretary V P Joy said that 2.5 lakh people will be tested in the state on April 16 and 17. Frontline workers, including healthcare officials, those in the election booth duty, hospitality sector, transport sector and in the private sector also will be given priority. People in high-risk categories will also get preference.
The Thrissur Pooram festival will be celebrated with restrictions. Passes to the event will be issued to only vaccinated and those with covid-19 negative reports.
The Chief Secretary said that there is no need to impose lockdown now. “We can reduce cases in two weeks time if all these restrictions imposed properly," he said.
Regarding the working of offices in containment zones, he said the district collectors will be taking the final decision. Most of the employees in the government sector have been vaccinated and employees in the private sector will be given preference in vaccinations.
Kerala has seven lakh doses of covid-19 vaccines in stock. Two lakh doses of vaccines was expected to reach the state from the centre today. The state needs one crore more doses.