National

Puducherry does away with e-pass; TN yet to decide

Our Bureau Chennai | Updated on August 23, 2020

A passenger at the Chennai airport showing his e-PASS to the police personnel on arrival Bijoy Ghosh   -  Bijoy Ghosh

State reports additional 5,975 coronavirus cases

The Puducherry government has discontinued the e-pass system with immediate effect. This comes a day after the Centre’s directives to all States that there should not be any restriction on inter-State and intra-State movement of persons and goods.

The decision of Puducherry government is likely to put pressure on the neighbouring Tamil Nadu government to follow suit.

In Tamil Nadu, the DMK and the BJP’s State unit have been urging the State government to remove the e-pass system to enable free movement of people within the State. The State government did relax it last week by issuing passes to all those who applied. Reports said that over 5 lakh passes have been issued since the relaxations from August 17.

Reacting to the Centre’s instructions, Tamil Nadu Health Minister C Vijayabaskar in Coimbatore said that even though removing e-pass system would pose a major challenge to the health department, if social distancing and wearing masks are followed strictly by travellers, the spread of the coronavirus could be prevented.

Covid-19 tally

Meanwhile, in the last 24 hours, an additional 5,975 coronavirus cases were reported in Tamil Nadu to take the total number of infections in the State to 3,79,385. However, after 6,047 Covid-19 patients were discharged today (total 3,19,327), the number of active cases was 53,541.

Another 70,127 samples were tested today.

After 97 deaths, the total number of fatalities due to the infection increased to 6,517.

The number of infections in Chennai was 1,298; further 1,040 patients were discharged; 19 deaths were reported and active cases this were 13,223.

Some of the districts that reported higher number of cases include Chengalpattu (352); Coimbatore (392); Cuddalore (380); Dindigul (178); Kancheepuram (222); Kanyakumari (181); Madurai (105) Pudukottai (155); Ranipet (155) Salem (261); Tenkasi (140); Thanjavur (116); Theni (170); Thiruvallur (354); Thiruvannamalai (100); Thirunelveli (158); Vellore (180) and Villupuram (160), according to Health Ministry.

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Published on August 23, 2020
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