Failure to practice social distancing by shop owners and their customers will lead to a sharp rise in COVID-19 cases: DGP

The police department will focus on hotspots and cluster containment zones Lockdown violators will be registered by random checking of CCTV cameras in residential societies: DGP Shivanand Jha


Director General of Police Shivanand Jha reiterated Prime Minister’s mantra of ‘Stay home, stay safe, stay healthy and be responsible and make others responsible” and added that lockdown will be intensified in four major cities of the state i.e. Ahmedabad, Vadodara, Surat and Rajkot as the transmission rate of the virus is high in these cities. The police are ensuring that shops other than those supplying essentials are not open. Containment areas identified as hotspots of the virus are being heavily barricaded to curb the movement of people in these areas to reduce the chances of transmission.

Efficient measures are being implemented by the police to ensure social distancing even in areas other than the four metros where shops have been allowed to open. The police are determined to serve, but it is also the responsibility of the shopkeeper to maintain social distancing around their shop by demarcating areas for the customers. This is equally important for the safety of the shopkeepers. Also, it is essential for the shopkeeper to wear a mask and ensure that customers abide by the same. Taking these precautions are very necessary, otherwise, the shopkeeper can end up becoming the source of transmission and infect those coming in contact with him/her.

For the convenience of the farmers in rural areas, technicians involved in fitting or repairing of borewells for farming will be able to travel without passes as long as they carry their driving licenses.

Jha said that people were seen gathering late night and early morning in some areas. As it violates social distancing, the police will now increase patrolling in these areas during stipulated hours. And as responsible citizens, if anyone notices such gatherings, they can report to Police helpline number 100, and police will take necessary action.

Speaking about attendees of Tablighi Jamaat, Jha said, some people of Bharuch district travelled in a ro-ro ferry to Bhavnagar from Dahej on 17th March 2020. Six of them were returning in a private bus and were stopped by the Palej police station, Bharuch and cases were registered against them. In another instance, a case was registered against 7 people in Amod police station who had travelled from Bhavnagar to Vatarsa ​​village, Bharuch by a private bus.

Jha appreciated the diligence of the police who are on their duty with firm morale in this scorching heat. He also informed that the policemen who were infected are joining their duties again now that they have recovered.

Throwing light on the significant use of drones and CCTV during the lockdown,Jha said that, the cities and towns are being thoroughly observed through drone surveillance. 296 crimes have been registered through drones. A total of 18661 people have been arrested for 9489 offenses to date. Meanwhile, under the Smart City and VISWAS project, 95 individuals have been arrested for 74 crimes reported through the CCTV network tallying up to 2808 individuals for 1834 offenses. Additionally, 334 crimes have been registered so far and 558 people have been arrested through CCTV’s in residential societies.

For spreading fake messages and rumors on social media, a total of 525 crimes have been registered and 1075 accused have been arrested. 13 accounts have been blocked. 1101 and 636 offenses have been registered through videography and automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) respectively. 428 offenses have been registered to date through mounted cameras in special ‘Prahari’ Vans.

Cases that have been registered so far include 2176 cases of violation of lockdown, 1148 against those violating home quarantine, and 564 other cases. 8267 vehicles have been seized in the state and 1,27,822 detained vehicles have been released so far, added Jha.

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