32 states and Union territories in India declare lockdown

In this bid to contain the coronavirus outbreak, tourism sector has come to a standstill

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A total of 32 states and Union territories have declared complete lockdown so far covering 560 districts, in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak, officials said on Tuesday. Three other states and UTs have imposed lockdowns in certain areas in their territories, covering 58 districts, and one UT has imposed closure of some activities in its jurisdiction.

“Following the central government’s communication to state governments and UTs, a total of 32 states and UTs have imposed complete lockdown covering 560 districts,” a government official said.

As 32 states and UTs of India have declared lockdown after nine deaths so far due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the tourism sector has come to a standstill. The sector that provides employment to thousands of people in organised and unorganised sectors, with Foreign Exchange Earnings (FEEs) of nearly $30 billion a year, has faced the direct impact of coronavirus scare.

Tourism in India is primarily concentrated in five states that account for nearly 65 per cent of the country’s overall tourism. These states are Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, and Maharashtra, according to the minister. Hence, these states may face the maximum negative impact of lockdown and travel restrictions.

The Centre has also asked states to enforce additional restrictions, if necessary. As many people continued to venture out despite the lockdown order, Puducherry, besides Punjab and Maharashtra, had ordered curfew so that no one goes out of their home.

Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba, meanwhile, has written a letter to State Chief Secretaries urging them to monitor the situation round the clock. Gauba said additional restrictions if necessary may be imposed and all current restrictions must be enforced strongly.

All violations should be met with legal action, the Cabinet Secretary told the states and UTs.

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