547 people arrested for violating lockdown orders in Haryana

Chandigarh, Mar 26 (PTI) The Haryana Police has arrested 547 people for flouting the lockdown orders enforced to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus, an official said on Thursday.

The country, which has 649 coronavirus positive cases and has recorded 13 deaths due to it till now, is under a 21-day lockdown from Tuesday midnight. 'Till 4 pm on March 26, 318 FIRs have been registered, 547 people arrested and 1,934 vehicles seized, and fines of Rs 10.20 lakh have been imposed (on violators),' Additional Director General of Police (Law and Order) Navdeep Singh Virk said.       Director General of Police, Haryana, Manoj Yadava is monitoring the situation and is in constant touch with commissioners of police and superintendents of police to ensure strict compliance of the lockdown orders, a police spokesperson said.      Essential and emergency services are exempted under the orders, officials said.        Police made a group of youths in Jhajjar to do sit-ups as punishment for violating lockdown orders, while in Kaithal's Guru Teg Bahadur Chowk, police personnel could be seen persuading a few people who were out for non-essential work to return home. In a village in Fatehabad district, police swung into action after it got reports that a group of 30 to 40 people could gather for a marriage function. The function did not take place after the man who was organising it was told that section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code (prevents assembly of five or more people at one spot) was imposed across the state in view of the lockdown, a police official said. From a few places, including Panipat, there were reports that people were not following social distancing at shops selling essential items like groceries.   The government has said it will be arranging delivery of essential items at doorsteps so that people stay indoors.         On Thursday, Chief Minister M L Khattar appealed to the people to follow social distancing to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.      In a televised address, he said, 'Corona Haryana say harega, bharat say bhagega (corona will be defeated in Haryana and the virus will be eliminated from India), this is our pledge.' 'Everyone should cooperate with the administration and volunteers. Together we have to rise to fight it,' Khattar said.      The government has set up helpline numbers '1075' and '1100' to address queries on the lockdown.

Haryana Governor Satyadeo Narain Arya has directed authorities to ensure that the homeless, daily-wagers, street vendors, beggars and other needy people receive cooked food.       He has also issued directions to ensure dry ration is delivered wherever it is necessary.      Red Cross officials have been asked by the governor to coordinate with the district administration and provide all possible assistance to the people. PTI SUN VSD ANB ANB ANB