By Sandun A. Jayasekera
The Police and armed forces further beefed up the security and highway regulations to prevent the public taking to the road unnecessarily, despite continuous advisories issued by the Health authorities, Armed forces and the Police, DIG Ajith Rohana said yesterday.
advisories issued by the Health authorities, Armed forces and the Police, DIG Ajith Rohana said yesterday.
We have requested the public right throughout not to come to towns and markets unless to buy medicine, food items or any other essentials. But we have observed that people rush to towns and markets in large numbers and expose themselves to COVID-19. Therefore, we have tightened the law on those who violate the curfew in Colombo and Puttalam Districts and ignore health and security instructions.
There will be an increased number of road blocks and policemen in civvies to apprehend errant public,” DIG Rohana said.
The curfew was lifted for 15 hours yesterday from 5.00 am to 8.00 pm as usual on 23 districts, except Colombo and Puttalam Districts and people were allowed to travel in Colombo and Puttalam only if they have 5 or 6 as the last two digits in their National Identity Card (NIC).
DIG Rohana said all those who use vehicles without a valid curfew permit or identity card applicable as per the last digit of the NIC for essential services will be arrested and produced in court and charged under the provisions of the Quarantine and Disease Prevention Ordinance.
Meanwhile, Daily Mirror correspondents said yesterday too the employees who were using the public transport to attend to essential services found travelling was extremely difficult. Though the Transport Ministry permitted trains, private and SLTB buses to allow seated capacity for commuters, there were no sufficient bus services in any part of the country.
General Manager, Railways (GMR) Dilantha Fernando said ten trains reached Fort railway station by 12.00 noon yesterday. In Galle, only 53 passengers were allowed to board ‘Galu Kumari’ last morning. Tickets were not issued to passengers despite instructions by Transport Ministry. In many parts of the country, long queues of passengers were seen waiting for buses. In many instances, Police and the armed forces had to intervene to settle skirmishes between angry passengers, SLR officials, private and SLTB bus operators.
Nearly 2000 men, women and children who had been stranded in the Gampaha District were provided with transport to go home following the intervention by the Prime Minister’s office last morning.
- We have observed people rush to towns and markets in large numbers and expose themselves to COVID-19