On the eve of the complete lockdown which will come into effect from Saturday morning and go on till May 16, Kerala recorded 38,460 new Covid cases from 1,44,345 samples tested in the past 24 hours.
Addressing the media on Friday, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said that the lockdown norms will be very strictly enforced as things are not good and all will have to cooperate.
"On Friday, 54 deaths were reported and the total number of active cases stands at 4,02,650. We had no other option but to enforce the lockdown. The supply of free food kits which has been there in our state since Covid surfaced will be there this month also. The kits will be also given to the migrant labourers," he said.
"During the lockdown, roadside eateries are not allowed and banks will operate only on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Vehicle workshops can open on the last two days of the week. Those who are arriving from other states will have to register on our Covid jagratha portal and those who do not do that, will have to undergo a 14 day quarantine at their own expense," he added.
He also said that during the lockdown, normal travel outside the district is not allowed under any circumstances. "But in case of extreme need, those who have to travel, need to carry with them a self-declaration about their need. Migrant labourers employed in work sites can engage in their work and the contractors' responsibility is to provide food and accommodation," he said.
Vijayan said those having co-morbidities in the age group 18 to 45 will get preference for vaccination and so would the ward level workers and volunteers.
Also warning those spreading rumours, the Chief Minister said: "We had given lot of warnings for those who come out with fake messages about lockdowns on social media. From now on, all such people who resort to these and those who share such messages will be proceeded against."
Vijayan also asked the media to ensure that there is responsibility when Covid news is being reported.
"Today there was an instance when a Covid patient was rushed to the hospital on a two-wheeler. Those who did it were worried about the condition of the patient. Instead of appreciating the work done, it should not have been reported in a negative way. Likewise we see reports of shortage of oxygen being highlighted and a wrong report about trade unions charging hefty wages for unloading vaccines. These should be best avoided," he said.
Vijayan also said that on Friday, police registered 35,000 cases and collected a fine of Rs 64 lakh from those who broke Covid protocols.
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