Stringent lockdown begins in Manipur

Stringent lockdown  begins in Manipur
Crowd in Imphal city market ahead of stringent COVID-19 lockdown in Manipur on Thursday.
Correspondent IMPHAL, JUL 23 | Publish Date: 7/23/2020 12:53:20 PM IST


Imphal witnessed massive traffic jams on Thursday, especially near market places ahead of the commencement of the seven-day complete lockdown across the state starting at 2pm. 

While traffic congestion was witnessed on almost all streets across the capital city Imphal, long queues of vehicles were witnessed at petrol pumps where people thronged to tank up their vehicles.

Maximum traffic snarl was witnessed on the BT Road in the heart of the city that links almost all the markets in the city as people rushed to hoard essential items. 

Grocery shops were crowded as shoppers defied social distancing even though most of them wore face masks.

“I am aware of the risk of COVID-19 infection but I have no option as I have to buy all the daily needs for seven or more days. Who knows how long will the lockdown be,” Ibobi, a shopper said.

He added that he also has to fill up his vehicle tank in case of an emergency in his family and all pending tasks have to be completed before 2 pm.

There was a mad rush at petrol pumps too as two-wheelers and four-wheelers made beeline queues in almost all fuel stations.

The same was witnessed since Wednesday afternoon after the news of imposition of complete lockdown in the state spread like wildfire.

Meanwhile, Manipur chief secretary Dr J Suresh Babu on Thursday issued a formal order imposing stringent lockdown in the whole of the state till July 31.

Infection of COVID-19 has been detected amongst a few people with no travel history outside the state.  The spread of infection in the state was reviewed by the state cabinet on July 22 where it was decided to impose complete lockdown in the entire state with effect from July 23, the order stated.

The chief secretary who is also the chairperson of the State Executive Committee of the State Disaster Management Authority issued the order under section 20(2)(a) of Disaster Management Act 2005.

Following the order, district magistrates of all districts have promulgated total curfew in their respective districts with effect from 2pm on Thursday till July 30.

One of the orders issued by Tamenglong district magistrate promulgating the prohibition stated that the detection of COVID-19 infections among the people with no history of travelling outside is a threat of outbreak of the pandemic in the district.

Such outbreaks are likely to cause danger to human life, health, safety, breach of peace and public tranquillity if it is left unchecked.

The COVID-19 situation in Manipur is grim as there was a spike in the locally transmitted cases in the state. 

The first case of local transmission was reportedly in Jiribam district followed by Thoubal district, one of the valley districts of the state which had already been under complete lockdown since July 21.

The locally transmitted cases continued to rise as 12 more such cases were detected in the last 24 hour (6.30 pm of July 22 to 6.30 pm of July 23).

The 12 locally transmitted cases were out of 31 new COVID-19 cases detected in the district during the same period.

Twelve more Army personnel at Leimakhong Army camp (Leimakhong Garrison) were also found positive for the virus.

Including them, Manipur recorded 55 new cases on Thursday, taking the tally of COVID-19 infections to 2115 including 1460 recovered cases after 42 persons were discharged on Thursday on recovering from the disease. The state has now 655 active cases being treated at various Covid care facilities across the state. According to a release of the COVID-19 Common Control Room, the recovery rate was 69.03.

The 55 fresh cases were detected from 748 samples including 163 antigen tests and 15 Truenet. Out of 48 samples tested at a private diagnostic centre in Imphal, two were found positive for the virus.

With the 748 sample tested in the last 24 hours, a total of 74,614 persons have been tested for the pandemic in the state.

Kangpokpi district where there were 270 confirmed cases has the highest number of infections among 16 districts of the state. With 260 cases, Ukhrul is closely follow Kangpokpi.

Tengnoupal district with 16 cases were detected so far has the lowest number of COVID cases.

Noney and Pherzawl districts where infections of 25 and 32 cases respectively were reported currently have no active  cases after all of them recovered, the latest status update on COVID-19 of the state health department stated. 

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