Udayavni Special

Coronavirus: Karnataka Govt announces lock-down of malls, cinema

PTI, Mar 13, 2020, 3:57 PM IST

Bengaluru: A day after the country’s first coronavirus death was reported from Kalaburagi in Karnataka, the State government on Friday leapt into action announcing lock-down of malls, cinema theatres, pubs and night clubs for a week.

The Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa also issued instructions to stop all kinds of exhibitions, summer camps, conferences, fairs, marriage, sports and engagement events and birthday parties state-wide for a week from Saturday.

“We will close all universities for a week in the entire State,” he told a press conference.

As much as possible try to avoid travelling, the Chief Minister said, adding instructions have been issued to pay special attention at government residential schools and hostels.

Examinations like class ten and others will go on as per schedule, he said, adding schools will continue to remain shut, colleges will also be closed for a week.

Responding to a question, the Chief Minister said, IT professionals and other professionals working in air-conditioned places should work from home for time being, for about a week.

“We are giving it as an advice.”

He however said, government offices and assembly session will continue as usual.

Yediyurappa said the measures were taken in public interest and sought their cooperation.

The Chief Minister said the decision has been arrived at after discussion with medical experts and officials.

On reviewing the situation after a week, next course of action will be decided, he said.

In its latest bulletin regarding COVID-19, the state government said, six samples were found positive for COVID-19 including that of the 76-year old man from Kalaburagi.

Chairperson of Infosys Foundation Sudha Murty had yesterday urged the Karnataka government to take steps to shut malls and theatres, saying the coronavirus multiplies in air-conditioned areas.

She suggested closure of all schools and colleges with immediate effect, malls, theatres and “all air-conditioned areas where the virus multiplies”, and allow only essential services like pharmacy, grocery and petrol bunks.

Meanwhile, Google confirmed that the 26-year old man who tested positive for coronavirus yesterday was a company employee of its Bengaluru office.

“The employee has been on quarantine since then, and we have asked colleagues who were in close contact with the employee to quarantine themselves and monitor their health,” the company said in a statement.

District officials in Kalaburagi said 46 people who were in direct contact with the 76-year old man who died on Tuesday night due to co-morbidity and coronavirus infection have been placed under quarantine.

Kalaburagi Deputy Commissioner Sharat B said 31 of them have been categorised as “high risk” and the remaining 15 as “low risk”.

The high-risk persons are being shifted to ESIC hospital in Kalaburagi.

Officials said four family members of the man have displayed flu symptoms and their swab samples have been sent for testing in Bengaluru.

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