Kohima, May 15: Nagaland wore a deserted look on Saturday as the state went into a week-long total lockdown to contain the spread of COVID-19.
The lockdown, which began on Friday evening, will continue till May 21. Police personnel, as well as other law-enforcing personnel of the districts, were deployed at strategic locations to check unnecessary movement of people, and thwart any untoward law and order situations, officials said. Colony and ward volunteers were seen putting up barricades to restrict the entry of outsiders. The volunteers also put up banners with messages for strictly following COVID-appropriate behaviours, especially wearing face masks at all times.
Except for essential services, all other activities, including the movement of people, have been restricted. The police were seen stopping vehicles in certain areas, seeking to know the purpose of their travel, and only those who had valid reasons were allowed to continue. Grocery stores and those selling essential commodities were open from 6 am to 12 pm, except for Kohima. In the state capital, such shops will be allowed to open on May 17, May 19 and May 21. The Kohima Police said that unlike the previous lockdowns, this time people have been very cooperative and supportive.
Only those people with emergency medical needs and with genuine reasons are moving out, said Kohima Police's Public Relations Officer Talisunep Imchen. "The response has been very good on the first day of the total lockdown with people extending full cooperation," he added. Maintaining that the main markets are open only for wholesalers of essential commodities, he expressed hope that the people would continue to support the fight against COVID- 19 by following the norms. The lockdown was preceded by containment of some areas in Kohima and Dimapur as the two districts reported the maximum number of COVID cases. The state reported 304 new COVID-19 cases on Saturday, taking the tally to 17,835. Six people also died in the state, following which the toll rose to 196, a health official said.
Dimapur reported the highest number of cases at 148, followed by Kohima (121), Health Minister S Pangnyu Phom said. There are 3,985 active cases in the state at present, he said. So far, 13,087 patients have recovered and 567 patients have migrated to other states, he said. The state administered 2,39,791 doses of COVID vaccines to 1,86,024 persons till date, said State Immunisation Officer Dr Ritu Thurr. - PTI