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With first COVID-19 case, Pondicherry goes in for shutdown

With Puducherry reporting its first coronavirus case, Chief Minister V Narayanasamy said all schools, colleges, cinemas and gymnasium centres would remain closed till this month-end from Wednesday as a precautionary measure to contain the spread of COVID-19.

PTI Reported by: PTI Puducherry Published on: March 17, 2020 18:08 IST
Pondicherry goes in for shutdown after first coronavirus
Image Source : PTI

Pondicherry goes in for shutdown after first coronavirus case (representational image)

With Puducherry reporting its first coronavirus case of a 68-year-old woman testing positive, Chief Minister V Narayanasamy on Tuesday said all schools, colleges, cinemas and gymnasium centres would remain closed till this month-end from Wednesday as a precautionary measure to contain the spread of COVID-19.

Addressing reporters after chairing a joint meeting of officials of Health and other departments organised to review the steps taken to prevent the spread of the infection, he said the government had earmarked Rs 7.5 crore to the Revenue Department to procure on emergency basic equipment to rise to any exigency.

The Health Department has been asked to immediately recruit doctors and nurses to meet the shortage in manpower to meet any requirement. All the tourists coming to Puducherry from other states and also abroad would be subject to intensive screening at the entry points, bus terminals, airport and other vulnerable spots.

Already, there was a decline of 50 per cent in the flow of tourists into Puducherry. "The government does not want to remain slack and hence a multi-pronged approach has been adopted to keep the infection at bay", he added.

Those organising social functions, including marriages, had been asked to restrict the invitees. Places of worship had also been asked to put in place the necessary facilities for the pilgrims and devotees to wash their hands.

The Sunday market, a weekly open-air market in the town, would remain closed as the market normally attracted a large number of shopping public. Political parties and other outfits would not be permitted to hold rallies, public meetings and demonstrations till this month-end, he added.

All the Ministers, Chief Secretary Ashwani Kumar, officials of the Health and Revenue Departments were among those who participated in the review meeting.

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