Odisha announces graded unlocking from July 1, night curfew to continue until July 16

Published : June 30, 2021 19:49 IST

A deserted Bhubaneswar during weekend shutdown on June 27. Photo: BISWARANJAN ROUT

The Naveen Patnaik-led government in Odisha on June 30 extended the partial lockdown in the State by another two weeks until July 16 with some relaxations. The government said that there will be a graded unlocking throughout the State from 6 a.m. on July 1 until 6 a.m. on July 16.

The lockdown restrictions were first imposed in Odisha on May 5 when the second wave wreaked havoc in the country. The State government had also announced some relaxations from the morning of June 17 to July 1.

The government in its latest order said that night curfew will remain operational in all the 30 districts of the State from 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. every day.

Shops, including street food vendors, can remain open from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. every day in 20 districts that were classified as Category-A on the basis of the COVID-19 case load, positivity rate and other relevant parameters. The 20 districts are: Angul, Bargarh, Balangir, Boudh, Dhenkanal, Deogarh, Gajapati, Ganjam, Jharsuguda, Kandhamal, Kalahandi, Keonjhar, Koraput, Malkanagiri, Nabarangpur, Nuapada, Rayagada, Sambalpur, Subarnapur and Sundargarh. However, shops in malls, spa and beauty parlours shall remain closed in these 20 districts until July 16.

Street food vendors will be allowed to serve only take-away food and shutdown will not be imposed during weekends in the Category-A districts. Weekly and daily markets can remain open with dispersed sitting arrangements and COVID-appropriate behaviour.

In the remaining 10 districts that are in Category-B, complete shutdown on weekends (from 6 p.m. on Fridays until 5 a.m. on Mondays) will remain in force. These districts are: Balasore, Bhadrak, Cuttack, Jagatsinghpur, Jajpur, Khordha, Kendrapada, Mayurbhanj, Nayagarh and Puri. Bhubaneswar, the capital, is located in Khordha district.

Shops, including street food vendors, can remain open from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. in these 10 districts on weekdays. However, shops in malls, spas and beauty parlours shall remain closed, but small salons can remain open. After 2 p.m. on weekdays, only the exempted categories of shops can remain open, along with movement of people associated with them.

The government said that district authorities may encourage and facilitate home delivery to minimise the movement of individuals outside their homes in the Category-B districts. Street food vendors will be allowed to serve only take-away food in the Category-B districts. Weekly and daily markets shall remain closed.

The order said that all commercial establishments in Category-B districts, including those dealing in essential items, food and vegetable shops, excluding all medicine/pharmaceuticals/medical devices/optical shops, shall remain closed during night curfew and weekend shutdowns.

Educational and training activities are probited and coaching institutions, exhibitions, trade fairs and melas will not be allowed to operate in the entire State until July 16. All cinema halls, malls, multiplexes, gymnasiums, parks, indoor amusement centres, theatres, bars and auditoriums, assembly halls, merry-go-round, Meena bazaar and related activities will also remain closed.

All religious places or places of worship will also remain closed for public. However, religious rituals will be allowed with a bare minimum of priests/servitors and staff. While religious congregations are strictly prohibited, marriages have been permitted, subject to approval from local authorities, with not more than 25 persons participating. In case of thread ceremony, funerals and last rites, the number of persons participating shall not be more than 20 for the entire event.

While inter-State public transport buses will remain suspended until 6 a.m. on July 16, goods carriers (inter- and intra-State), whether loaded or unloaded, are permitted to ply.

Meanwhile, a total of 3,371 new COVID-19 cases were reported in Odisha on June 29, with the highest number of 530 cases reported from Khordha district.

The total number of COVID-19 cases in the State increased to 9,09,800, of which 8,74,307 had recovered. While there were 31,422 active cases, the death toll due to COVID-19 increased to 4,018, with 48 persons succumbing to the disease on June 29.