INDEFINITE LOCKDOWN BEGINS TO COUNTER COVID-19 THREAT IN VALLEY

Indefinite restrictions on the movement of people and vehicles and closure of shops and other business establishments began today in Srinagar district and some other parts of Kashmir to counter the growing Coronovirus threat.

The restrictions threw the normal life out of gear. The administration decided to impose the restrictions after a woman from Khanyar tested positive for Coronavirus. The woman said to be a close relative of some top and health officials had recently returned after performing Umrah in Saudi Arabia. The relatives, officials said, have been isolated for quarantine.

This morning, huge deployment of police and security forces was made across Srinagar. They blocked important roads and bridges with heavy vehicles and barbed wire to impose the restrictions. They did not allow shopkeepers to open shops and other business establishments. Subsequently, a shutdown was enforced. However, in some Civil Lines areas private vehicles were allowed to ply. But the rush led to massive jamming particularly at Aiport Road from Peerbagh to Haiderpora.

Officials said that the restrictions will be more strict and tougher from tomorrow. People and vehicles will not be allowed to move except government officials and medical emergencies. Shops and other business establishments will remain closed except for pharmacies and shops dealing with essential commodities and grocery.
The officials from administration have taken possession of over a number of hotels and premises of colleges and professional institutions for accommodating passengers reaching at the airport here from outside for isolation and quarantine. Today a number of Kashmiri students mostly girls returning from Bangladesh were isloated and taken to a hotel here for quarantine till further orders.
Last night there was panic shopping in several areas of the city. The people in large number came out of their houses to stock eatables and other essentials.
Last evening the administration ordered banning of public transport. Today no public transport was allowed on any road.
The authorities have already closed all educational institutions in view of the Coronavirus threat.