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Intense lockdown in Tamil Nadu on Sunday

Chennai: An intense lockdown, without any relaxations, was imposed across Tamil Nadu on Sunday as part of the state government's efforts to curb the spread of coronavirus, with roads remaining deserted and shops downing shutters.

The state government had earlier announced that on all the four Sundays in July, intense lockdown will be in force across Tamil Nadu and only health care services, including pharmacies and hospitals, will be functional.

People remained indoors in different cities in the state, even as no commercial activities were witnessed, reports reaching here said.

Shops, including those selling vegetables and groceries were closed in many parts and there was no movement of vehicular traffic on key roads in different parts of the state.

Police personnel were posted in various junctions as part of total implementation of the lockdown.

Earlier, the government had announced implementing intense lockdown from June 19 to July 5 in Chennai and its neighbouring districts--Kancheepuram, Tiruvallur and Chengalpet.

The said districts will however, see relaxations in the curbs starting Monday, with the government allowing extension of business hours of vegetable shops, provision stores and restaurants, which can only serve takeaways.

Tea shops, closed since June 19, could resume functioning, while barring malls, all kinds of showrooms and others, including textiles and jewellery, can be back in business, Chief Minister K Palaniswami had said on Saturday.

IT firms and private units can also resume activity with various safety precautions in place.

However, curbs would continue in Madurai and nearby areas till July 12.

Tamil Nadu has the second highest number of virus cases in the country behind Maharashtra, and its cumulative tally stood at 1.07 lakh as of Saturday.

The virus load is more pronounced in Chennai, Tiruvallur, Kancheepuram, Chengalpet and Madurai.

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