Rise in COVID-19 cases: parks to remain closed in Vellore

Collector urges residents to follow COVID-19 safety norms

Along with the Vellore Corporation, the district administration has taken a series of steps like closure of all parks, including the most visited park inside the Fort complex in Vellore on Wednesday, due to steady rise in COVID-19 cases since last week.

Imposition of fine for not wearing face masks and not following social distancing norms in public places for individuals and 50% occupancy in government buses are other stringent restrictions that are being enforced. Collector P. Kumaravel Pandian, on Wednesday, inspected several areas in the town asking residents, traders and motorists to follow COVID-19 safety norms.

At present, the Corporation has 60 wards, covering all its four zones — Katpadi, Sathuvachari, Vellore Fort and Shenbakkam — with a population of around 10 lakh. The relaxation of lockdown restrictions, especially since July 11, has increased the traffic flow in the town, with key routes like Green Circle, Anna Salai and Fort Road witnessing pre-Covid levels of traffic congestion.

In fact, the Vellore Fort, the most frequented tourist spot in the Fort Town, recorded a footfall of nearly a thousand visitors every day since last month. The corporation officials said that such crowd in public places in the town has slowly increased the number of cases in the past few weeks, with an average of around 30 cases being reported every day. "We are creating awareness of the pandemic among people. At the same time, we decided to intensify checks to ensure wearing of masks and following social distancing norms in public places," N. Sankaran, Corporation Commissioner, told The Hindu.

Apart from creating awareness among the public, the Corporation has also been conducting door-to-door checks on COVID-19 symptoms. Fever camps are also being held within its limits every day. More importantly, on an average, ₹40,000 fine is collected from each of the four zones in the town. More than two dozen shops around the Fort were also fined for violating Covid-19 safety norms since Monday.

Temples, big crowded markets and parks were closed to prevent further spread in the town.

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