Lockdown is Back in Bengaluru: Here’s What Will be Open and Closed

Back in April and May, Bengaluru was dubbed as the model city to tackle the ravaging coronavirus infection in the country. The State Government of Karnataka and Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) received praises from the Central Government for effectively handling the pandemic situation in one of the most populated cities in India. 

Fast forward to July, the situation in Bengaluru is now comparable to what it is in other major cities such as Mumbai and New Delhi. The city has been consistently recording over a thousand cases a day. This has led to the Karnataka Government locking down the Bengaluru Urban and Bengaluru Rural districts until 23 July starting from 8 p.m. of 14 July. 

This lockdown is very different from what it was during April and May. You are not allowed to travel in your vehicle unless there is an emergency or have a valid reason to do so. The public transport system (BMTC, KSRTC and Bengaluru Metro) would not be functional. Even the taxi services are not available during the lockdown. 

Here’s what will be available during the lockdown:

  • Ration/grocery (vegetables, fruits, meat and dairy items) shops are permitted to remain open between 5 a.m. and 12 noon.
  • Hospitals, clinics, pharmacies and other medical services to function as usual. 
  • Only the essential items would be delivered to your doorstep.
  • Government departments and wings to operate with 50% staff.
  • Electricity and water services would be uninterrupted as the concerned departments would be working as usual.
  • Courts, defence-related activities and police services would be in full swing.
  • Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) having partnered with the BBMP to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic shall also be open.
  • Agricultural activities outside the containment zones can be carried out without any restrictions.
  • Goods and freight carriers would continue their movements outside the containment areas.

Also Read: COVID-19 Amplified Digital Payments in India Where Cash Ban Didn’t Work

The personnel involved in the above are to ensure that they follow the guidelines strictly. Here’s what will not be available during the lockdown:

  • Hotels and restaurants (other than the ones meant for the workers of essential sectors) to be shut. However, they can offer a parcel or take away services. 
  • Malls, sports complexes including swimming pools, movie theatres, gyms, pubs, bars, assembly halls and similar places for mass gatherings to continue to be shut.
  • Colleges, schools and other educational institutions, including coaching centres, will be closed.
  • Places of worship will not be opened.
  • Public transport will not be available.

The movement of vehicles to and from Bengaluru is allowed only for emergency cases. The people should obtain passes from the concerned authorities and strictly follow the guidelines. If there is no valid reason for a person to be on the road, then his or her vehicle will be seized and booked under the Disaster Management Act. 

Businesses, especially newly established startups, are already hard hit by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Bengaluru being the startup capital of India, the companies are hopeful of the government not extending the lockdown and are hopeful of this being a once-off imposition of the lockdown restrictions. 

For any clarifications/feedback on the topic, please contact the writer at vineeth.nc@cleartax.in

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