Chennai Buzz: COVID cases continue to rise | Prohibitory orders in place | Precautions at voting booths…and more

Weekly update on happenings across the city.

Chennai witnesses uptick in COVID cases, more beds arranged

Chennai recorded 1,290 fresh COVID-19 cases on April 3rd. There were 730 recoveries, 7 deaths and 7,713 persons are currently undergoing treatment. 

In the wake of increasing COVID infections, the Greater Chennai Corporation (GCC) has re-initiated containment measures in 378 streets. A street or house with three or more index cases, or with two or more affected families, are classified as containment zones. This time, the containment restriction is defined at the house-level unlike in the past, when it was imposed at the street-level. 

So far, 4,163 houses have been identified across the 15 zones where COVID-19 cases have been detected. GCC Commissioner G Prakash stated that the clusters are all localised and added that the new clusters are not spreading exponentially. The civic body is setting-up a 6,000-bedded facility in Athipattu as a precaution to deal with any increased hospitalisation and isolation needs. 

Source: The New Indian Express 

Prohibitory order issued in Chennai

In view of the ongoing pandemic and upcoming assembly polls, the Greater Chennai City Police has issued prohibitory orders forbidding assembly, fasts, protests, demonstrations and human chain meetings in public spaces till April 30th. 

Those violating the norms will be booked under Section 144 of CrPC. Other guidelines and restrictions will be released by the revenue and disaster management department.

Weddings and funerals are exempt from the order but those hosting them are mandated to apply for grant of permission five days in advance.

Source: The Times of India

Volunteers at booths to check temperature

As Tamil Nadu prepares to go to polls on April 6th, district election officials have stated that two volunteers will be stationed at every booth as part of COVID safety protocols. The volunteers will check temperature and provide sanitisers in every voting booth in Chennai. Voters are mandated to wear masks and maintain social distancing norms while exercising their right to vote. 

As an additional precaution, officials are also considering issuing a polyethylene glove to voters which can be discarded in the biomedical waste bins after voting. 

People under home isolation can vote in the last hour of the voting window – 6 pm to 7 pm. 

Source: The New Indian Express

Read more: Voting in the time of COVID-19: Chennai voters, check out this detailed guide

TNSCB tenements request waiver of maintenance charges

The tenements in Perumbakkam resettlement colony are densely packed with 198 units in a block. Pic: Laasya Shekar

Occupants of Tamil Nadu Slum Clearance Board (TNSCB) tenements in Navalur, Gudapakkam and Perumbakkam have requested the government to waive off the maintenance charges as they have been having tough times due to job losses.

The residents are required to pay Rs 750 every month. They allege that the authorities have asked them to pay the outstanding dues accumulated during the lockdown period by May.

Read more: Why COVID proved to be a greater challenge in Chennai’s resettlement colonies

Information and Resource Centre for the Deprived Urban Community (IRCDUC) and the Housing and Land Rights Network (HRLN) carried out a study which stated that the state government made announcements on the extension of rent and maintenance payment for the residents of Tamil Nadu Housing Board (TNHB) units and that the TNSCB units were not included in this announcement.  

Source: The Times of India

[Compiled by Bhavani Prabhakar]

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