Sunday lockdown brings Tamil Nadu to a grinding halt

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Chennai, Apr 25 (PTI) Tamil Nadu on Sunday observed a compelete lockdown, the first during the current wave of the coronavirus pandemic, with operation of only essential services and roads were deserted as people remained indoors.

The second lockdown after a seven month hiatus saw closure of markets and all retail outlets, including state-run liquor stores and bars, while restaurants and hotels functioned for take away services alone.

Roads and highways were deserted, save for policemen and the occasional movement of vehicles involved in essential services like distribution of milk, ferrying of cargo and those working for online food order and delivery firms.

The shopping hubs of Pondy Bazaar and and T Nagar here wore a desolate look.

Healthcare professionals and sanitary workers, however, continued their work as usual, as also personnel of civic bodies, who went about their field work.

'Amma Canteens', the state-run low cost eateries, worked as usual, catering to local people and workers.

Amid restrictions, temples in several places in Tamil Nadu, including Tiruvannamalai,witnessed weddings with reduced participation of guests, Sunday being an auspicious 'muhurtham' day.

Police put up barricades in important intersections across Tamil Nadu, including about 200 in the city, to check violations.

People who ventured out were questioned by police and allowed to proceed if it was for valid purposes like marriages and and funerals.

Police distributed food to the needy here.

As many as 60 vehicles were detained in Chennai alone for violation of lockdown norms.

The state had previously witnessed a Sunday lockdown in the last week of August 2020, after which restrictions were eased.

Days ago, the government had announced the Sunday lockdown again in view of rising number of COVID-19 cases.

On Saturday, Tamil Nadu's active cases crossed the one lakh mark. PTI VGN APR ADMINISTRATOR APR ADMINISTRATOR