Lockdown in Delhi: Police chief urges people to stay at home

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New Delhi, Apr 19 (PTI) Delhi Police Commissioner S N Shrivastava on Monday appealed to the people of the national capital to stay at home and follow the COVID-19 guidelines during the one-week lockdown announced by the AAP government.

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal announced a six-day lockdown from 10 pm on Monday till 5 am on April 26 which he said was necessary to deal with the rising number of COVID-19 cases as the city's health system was stretched to its limits.

'I appeal to the citizens of the national capital to stay inside their homes. Lockdown has been announced from 10 pm on Monday till 5 am on April 26. The essential commodities will be available,' Shrivastava said.

He said the majority of people were inside their house during the weekend curfew but some of them came out of their houses and were prosecuted.

'We also sympathise with migrant labourers who anticipate losing their jobs. I want to appeal to them that they should remain in Delhi. We will take care of them,' the police chief said.

Delhi Police PRO Chinmoy Biswal said, 'The Delhi Police personnel and senior officers from the districts will be on ground 24x7 to enforce the lockdown. We have successfully implemented the weekend curfew. Over 7,000 challans were issued for violating COVID guidelines. More than 1,400 FIRs were registered and over 1,000 people arrested for disobeying the curfew.

'We also appeal to the citizens that they should cooperate with police personnel during checks. The essential commodities and genuine emergency will be facilitated. However, people stepping out of their homes without valid reasons will be prosecuted under the law,' Biswal said.

On Monday, police issued 2,844 challans to people for not wearing mask while a total of 41 people were prosecuted for violation of social distancing norms, a senior police officer said.

Earlier in the day, Kejriwal said the national capital's health system is tremendously stretched although it has not collapsed yet, and added that despite around 25,500 cases coming up every day, it is still functioning.

But any system has its limit, he said, assuring that the lockdown is needed to prevent the health system of Delhi from collapsing under the increasing number of patients as there is an acute shortage of medicines, beds, ICUs and oxygen.

In its order, the Delhi Disaster Management Authority said the movement of people will be allowed for marriage related gatherings and up to 50 people will be permitted to attend a wedding, but they will have to show soft or hard copy of the marriage card. For funerals, 20 people will be allowed to attend.

Essential services will be allowed during the lockdown, but private offices and other establishments like shops, malls, weekly markets, manufacturing units, educational and coaching institutes, cinema halls, restaurants, bars, assembly halls, auditoriums, public parks, sport complexes, gyms, spas, barber shops, saloons and beauty parlours will remain closed. PTI NIT NIT TDS TDS