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Kerala may review weekend lockdowns

Our Bureau Thiruvananthapuram | Updated on July 20, 2021

A senior citizen walks down a near-empty road in Thiruvananthapuram on Thursday. The Kerala government , which has put stringent restrictions in place to bend the Covid-19 second wave surge, announced a complete lockdown in the State. The nine-day full shutdown starts Saturday morning MAHINSHA S MAHINSHA S

High-level review meeting by evening

Relaxations in the lockdown in Kerala for three days from Sunday in view of Bakrid are expected to continue to be valid today (Tuesday) even as the Supreme Court on Monday had asked the State government to file its response on an application against the three-day easing of lockdown.

The relaxations do not apply where the Covid test positivity rate (TPR) is above 15 per cent and where a triple lockdown has been in effect. In those local self-government jurisdictions where the TPR is variously lower across A, B and C categories, shops selling essential goods may open for business today.

Review of weekend lockdowns

Meanwhile, sources said that a high-level meeting review meeting that convenes every day is expected to decide later this (Tuesday) evening on further relaxations. Sources in the government said that it is likely the weekend lockdown currently in effect across the state also may also under review.

The government is under pressure to act by the trading community represented by the Kerala Vyapara Vyavasayi Ekopana Samithi (KVVES), the strongest among all, which had dared to take it on by openly flouting the lockdown that had caused huge economic losses to them and thrown open the shops.

No effect on Covid TPR

The KVVES has been arguing with ‘some logic and even more empathy’ that the weekend lockdowns have proved ‘unscientific’ in the manner they were being implemented and had only led to avoidable crowding during the rest of the weekdays. They hardly have had any salutary effect on the TPR.

It is believed that the KVVES may have been aiming to kill more than one bird given that the Onam festival and associated shopping season is approaching which they were forced to sit out right from 2018 when the Great Floods washed away the season followed a year later by successive Covid waves.

Published on July 20, 2021

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