Deputy chief minister Y Patton during a review meeting on the state’s preparedness to contain spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) at his residence on Tuesday Credit: EastMojo image

Kohima: Even as Nagaland continues to be under lockdown from midnight of March 22, the government on Tuesday imposed Section 144 of the CrPC in Dimapur district prohibiting gathering of over five people. Deputy Chief Minister of Nagaland Y Patton said these were necessary steps to combat spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).

Pre-arranged gatherings have been exempted from Section 144 in Dimapur but with special permission from the office of the commissioner of police. Movement of all non-essential vehicles has been prohibited.

Patton said that the governmental orders restricting public movements except for procurement and distribution of essential commodities, availing essential services, medical facilities and other basic needs, including the prohibitory order under Section 144 of the CrPC has been issued in Dimapur district “considering the need of the hour”.

Dy chief minister Patton held a review meeting of the steps being taken and the state’s preparedness to combat the virus.

An update from the deputy CM’s media cell said that the meeting was held with the Principal Secretary & Commissioner, Nagaland, Home Commissioner, DGP Nagaland, Special Secretary (Home), Secretary Health & Family Welfare, ADG (Admn), ADG (Law & Order) and SP Kohima at the official residence of Deputy Chief Minister.

Patton said that the society is “on a threshold of one of the greatest health crisis of our times”, and he reiterated that the state’s home department and other associated departments are working 24/7, keeping in mind the safety of the citizens.

Patton directed the district administrations, particularly those sharing inter-state borders, to re-strengthen the sealing of the border areas as notified earlier. The Director General of Police (DGP) was also directed to instruct all the units to remain alert and vigil and to extent full cooperation in all possible way to contain the disease.

He also directed the DGP to take stern action against those people not complying with the government advisories pertaining to social distancing and staying indoors except for emergencies. Patton expressed concern over the random and unnecessary movement of government employees and students. He added that shutting down of offices and educational institutions except for essential services does not mean that one should roam around in public places but should stay in-door to avoid getting infected by the COVID-19.

Further, Patton appealed all the civil societies, NGOs, churches and student bodies to extend support to the initiatives taken by the state government and guide the common people to comply with the government’s advisories.

Appealing to the people of Nagaland not to panic or get swayed by rumours spread on social media from unauthenticated sources, he urged them to remain calm and strictly adhere to the advisories issued by the government.

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