Covid-19: This district in Tamil Nadu has decided to close shops, public places for unvaccinated


A week’s time has been given to the residents of Madurai in southern Tamil Nadu by the district administration for getting at least one dose of the Covid-19 vaccine following which, those unvaccinated would be barred entry from public places and commercial establishments.

The announcement was made by district collector Aneesh Sekhar, who said that only people possessing a vaccine certificate will be allowed in public places.

“One week’s time has been given to people to get at least one dose of Covid-19 vaccine, failing which those unvaccinated people to be not allowed to enter public places like hotels, shopping malls and other commercial establishments,” news agency ANI quoted the collector as saying.

With a week’s time left, according to the administration’s announcement, close to 300,000 people are yet to receive even one dose of the vaccine, the collector said. He further insisted that at least one dose was necessary for the people to visit public places.

Also read | Omicron: Tamil Nadu issues new SOPs; unvaccinated people to be restricted

“Only people with a coronavirus vaccine certificate should be allowed in crowded places. People without the vaccine will not be allowed in hotels, hostels, bars, shopping malls, businesses, factories, businesses, educational institutions, wedding halls, theatres, markets, and wine shops. People coming to public places should be vaccinated with at least the first dose,” he said.

Similar restrictions have also been implemented in Tamil Nadu’s neighbouring Karnataka where only vaccinated people would be allowed in public places. The measures were implemented after the state detected the first two cases of the Omicron variant in the country.

The coercive measure from the Madurai administration came after state health minister Ma Subramanian on Wednesday (December 1) said that the state government has asked district officials to restrict the movement of unvaccinated people among the public. The move has been intended at increasing the vaccination rate and coverage.

“We have instructed district collectors to take steps on restrictions for non-vaccinated people and ensure that they do not come in public places. We want to ensure that people get vaccinated without fail,” ANI quoted the minister as saying earlier.

Tamil Nadu has reported two international passengers – one from the UK and another from Singapore – who have tested positive for coronavirus at the Chennai and Tiruchirapalli international airports respectively. Following this, the airports in Chennai, Madurai and Coimbatore started compulsory testing of passengers arriving from the ‘at-risk’ nations listed by the Union health ministry, Subramanian said.

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