Kerala is learnt to have decided against lifting the weekend lockdown and other restrictions, even as relaxations allowed in view of Bakrid end today (Tuesday). Adverse remarks from the Supreme Court in the morning weighed on the government while arriving at this decision a few hours later.
The Supreme Court had termed the relaxations as ‘wholly uncalled for’ even in areas having a high Covid-19 positivity rate and warned that it will take action if the easing of curbs leads to further spread of the virus. It went on to pull up the government for giving in to pressure from traders and said it represented a ‘sorry state of affairs.’
The three-day relaxations did not apply where the Covid test positivity rate was above 15 per cent and where a triple lockdown was in effect. In local self-government jurisdictions where the TPR is lower across A, B and C categories, shops selling essential goods can open for business today.
The government was under pressure from the trading community, represented by the Kerala Vyapara Vyavasayi Ekopana Samithi (KVVES), which had dared to take it on by openly flouting the lockdown that had caused huge economic loss to them. The KVVES has been arguing with ‘some logic and even more empathy’ that the ‘unscientific’ implementation of the weekend lockdowns had led to avoidable crowding during the rest of the weekdays. It had hardly had any salutary effect on the TPR.