NEW DELHI: On the first day of the weeklong lockdown, Delhiites largely followed the rules, though roads were not as deserted as they were during the weekend curfew. Due to exempted activities like government offices and essential services, some crowd was seen on key roads.
However, the markets, crowded till last week, were largely deserted. Delhi Police personnel were seen monitoring the movement to ensure that people do not violate the lockdown guidelines. Domestic servants are not allowed during this period and liquor shops are closed.
The weeklong restrictions have been imposed as a last resort because the hospitals are under extreme stress. The move is aimed at breaking the chain of novel coronavirus infection.
This lockdown is less restrictive as compared to the one imposed last year. Public transport services are allowed and people can go to catch a flight, train or a bus — not running during the last lockdown — if they have a valid ticket. Home delivery from restaurants are also permitted.
Government officials and those of autonomous bodies, PSUs and municipal corporations and people engaged in police, emergency services, electricity, water and sanitation, public transport and other essential services have been expempted to ensure uninterrupted delivery of public services. People moving for getting healthcare services along with an attendant, Covid tests and vaccination are also exempted.
An official said most people were out on the road for essential purposes and were allowed. “Almost all shops in the markets were closed except those dealing in essential services like milk booths, chemist shops. In residential areas, some people were seen moving around for essential supplies,” said Devinder Jain, general secretary of Federation of All India Vyapar Mandal.
Delhi Metro, public buses and other modes of public transport were operating but carrying only exempted people. Public parks, private offices dealing in non-essential items, shopping centres, malls, weekly markets, manufacturing units, educational & coaching institutes, cinema & theatres, restaurant & bars , auditoriums, entertainment parks, gyms, spas, barber shops and beauty parlours were shut as per the Delhi Disaster Management Authority order.
Teams of the district administration also kept a watch at sensitive places to ensure that the guidelines are not violated. Those found indulging in non-essential movements were fined and in some cases some people were also booked.
The lockdown is likely to affect the vaccination coverage because many people feel discouraged to venture out for the jab.