Despite a curfew being in place in Mumbai to control the spread of coronavirus, the city has been witnessing mini traffic jams at various check points. To curb the same and to ensure uninterrupted movement of essential services, Mumbai Police will now be providing colour codes to vehicles in the essential services category, to limit the number of vehicles plying on roads. Mumbai Police Commissioner IPS Hemant Nagrale said this was important so that those involved in the essential services category such as doctors, nurses, vehicles like ambulances and medical suppliers are not stuck in traffic jams.
Nagrale said those who flout norms of colour codes will be face police action. According to the new code, workers of financial sector and banks will have yellow stickers, while medical staff and health workers will have red colour. Essential services like vegetable vendors and grain transporters have been given green colour. The police directed the owners of vehicles falling under these categories to put up round stickers, measuring 6 inches in diameter, on front screen and the back screen of the cars. Nagrale said while individuals can themselves paste the stickers, they can also acquire them from check points.
Meanwhile, Maharashtra’s ‘break the chain’ restrictions to tackle the surge in coronavirus cases may be extended beyond May 1 depending on the outbreak situation, state health minister Rajesh Tope said on Saturday. Speaking to reporters in Jalna, over 400 kilometres from here, Tope said people have been supportive of the restrictions, though some violations of prohibitory rules under section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) have also been reported.
“We are taking stock of the situation. There have been some violations of CrPC section 144 invoked to curb the COVID-19 spread. We may extend these restrictions beyond May 1, depending on the situation. A decision will be finalized only after reviewing the outcome of these 15 days (when the restrictions will be in place)."
“I must admit people have been supportive of the restrictions," the minister, who has been insisting on strict measures and restriction on the movement of people to contain the outbreak, said.
The state government on April 14 announced several restrictions under a ‘break the chain’ initiative to rein in what is currently the severest spike in COVID-19 cases anywhere in the country.