Chandigarh, Mar 22 (PTI) The Chandigarh on Sunday put the Union Territory and joint capital of Punjab and Haryana under lockdown till March 31, suspending all non-essential services as well inter- & intra-city public transports from midnight to curb the coronavirus spread.
The restrictions under the lockdown will come into effect from midnight tonight, an order issued by Chandigarh Administration under the provisions of the Epidemic Diseases Act, said.
The lockdown in Chandigarh was ordered amid the Punjab government ordering it in the entire state and the Haryana government replicating the preventive and precautionary measure in seven districts of the state.
The UT administration had earlier issued COVID-19 regulations for the prevention and containment of the spread of infection.
'The Chandigarh Administration now notifies a lockdown in the territorial jurisdiction of entire UT Chandigarh in public interest with effect from midnight of March 23 until March 31,' the order said.
“All shops, commercial establishments, offices and factories, workshops, godowns etc. shall close their operations,” it said.
Earlier an official statement had said that “till 31st March, all non-essential establishments including offices, schools, colleges, factories and other business establishments shall remain closed. All public transport shall also remain suspended”.
The latest order said 'no public transport services including operation of taxis/auto rickshaws etc shall be permitted except transport of all kinds to and from hospitals, airports, railway stations, bus stands.' 'People are required to stay at home and come out only for essential services and that too one member of a family at a time and strictly following social distancing guidelines issued earlier,' the order said.
'Any gathering of more than five persons shall be prohibited,' the order emphasised.
'All inter-state commercial transport too shall be closed,' the order said.
'The restrictions shall, however, not be applicable to essential services including chemist shops, ration shops, public offices tasked with emergency, law and order and essential functions,' the UT administration said in its order.
The Chandigarh administration has made its principal secretary (Health) as the overall incharge to provide for the health services and plan quarantine facilities in the Union territory.
An IAS officer will be overall incharge of the control room to be set up in Chandigarh police headquarters here for answering queries / calls made by the general public in view of the restrictions imposed.
He would ensure that at least one senior officer is personally available round-the-clock in the control room, says the order.
People have been advised not to believe in rumours and take all preventive steps as being communicated from time to time by authorities concerned.
Earlier in the day, the Punjab government had decided to enforce lockdown in the entire state till March 31 in the wake of the threat of coronavirus outbreak.
'Ordered statewide lockdown till 31st March to check spread of Covid 19,' Chief Minister Amarinder Singh tweeted.
He informed that all essential and government services would continue during the lockdown in Punjab, where 21 have so far tested positive for COVID-19. PTI SUN VSD RAX RAX